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A.D. 1756 TO 1808 



" To Nature in my earlUst youth, 
I vowed my constancy and truth / 
Wherein lie H ARDWICK'S much laved shade. 
Enamoured cfher charms I strayed. 
And as I roved the woods among. 
Her praise in lisping numbers sung. " 

Dean Powys. 





All rights reserved 



My dear friends, the Elder Branch of the 

Lybbe Powys^ of Hardwick^ 

I dedicate this effort of pleasing toil in collating 

and noting^ the interesting Diaries of their 

clever and charming ancestress. 


Shiplakb Vicarage, 
March 1899. 


The following extracts from the diaries and travelling 
journals of Mrs. Philip Lybbe Powys, nie Caroline 
Girle,- ranging from a.d. 1756 to 1808, present such 
an accurate picture of life, manners, and customs of 
the upper class of that period, that though my work 
of collating, noting, and linking together the many, 
some twenty books, lent to me by various members 
of the family, was chiefly undertaken on their account, 
I feel that they cannot fail to interest the general 
reader, containing as they do such interesting anec- 
dotes of royalty, and other notable people, descriptions 
of country seats, places, towns, manufactures, amuse- 
ments, and general habits of the period which now form 
history, and that, comparatively little studied ; for the 
immediate century beyond our own days, I fancy, is 
more often ignored, and less understood, than the 
mord distant periods of time, at whatever period we 
live. My heroine was the daughter of John Girle, 
Esq., described of Lincoln's-Inn-Fields,* M.D. He 

' Mr. Girle built this house. His daughter states, '^ We went into the 
house my father built in Lincoln's-Inn-Fields, September 14, 1754." 


owned estates at Beenham, Bucklebury, Padworth, 
and Ufton, in Berkshire. He married in 1734 
Barbara, third daughter, and co-heiress, of John 
Slaney, Esq., of Yardley and Lulsley, Worcester- 
shire ; their only child, Caroline, was born on Dec- 
ember 27, St. Johns Day, 1738, old style, but in 
new style, January 7, 1739. Her father, Mr. Girle, 
had two sisters : Jane, married to Benjamin Bagley, 
Esq.; the other, Elizabeth, in 1745, to William Mount, 
Esq., of Wasing Place, Berks, as his second wife. 
Mrs. Girle had also two sisters : one, Sarah, married 
William Goldborough, Esq. ; the other, Mary, married 
to — Hussey, Esq. 

The arms of Girle quartered with Slaney are : 
Girle, crest, a gerbe or sheaf of wheat ; arms, gules, 
on a cross engraved or, a pellet ; Slaney, gules, a bend 
or between three martlets. The present head of the 
Slaney family is Colonel William St. Kenyon Slaney, 
of Hatton Grange, Shifnal, Salop. The Slaney s are 
of a very ancient family; Adolphus de Slainie or 
Slane, is supposed to have come to England from 
Bohemia in the Empress Maud's train. The Slaney 
motto is '* Deo duce comite industria." 

Of Caroline Girle's early youth I can find out little, 
but that her parents must have been most sedulous in 
cultivating her bright mind, in fostering her powers 


of memory, observation, and general intelligence, will 
be obvious from the following pages. 

In Beenham Church, Berks, in the belfry, is a tablet 
to the memory of John Girle, which tells us all that 
can now be found out about him : — 

**This monument was erected by Mrs. Girle in 
memory of her deceased husband, John Girle, Esquire, 
late of Lincoln's- Inn-Fields, London, Surgeon, who 
having early in life acquired an ample fortune, the just 
reward of superior eminence, and unremitting diligence 
in his profession, indulged himself in the pleasing pro- 
spect of dedicating the remainder of his days to the 
noblest purpose of humanity, the relief of the distresses, 
and infirmities, of his indigent fellow-creatures, an office 
which the goodness of his heart made him ever under- 
take with readiness, and which the skill of his hand 
enabled him generally to execute with success. But 
this pious purpose was broken off by his death, which 
happened July 5th, 1761, in the 59th year of his age. 
He married the daughter of John Slaney, of Worcester- 
shire, by whom he left an only daughter, married to 
Philip Lybbe Powys, Esquire, of Hardwick, Oxon." 

In the burial register it states : — 

"John Girle, Esq., of Lincoln's- Inn- Fields, Middle- 
sex, buried July 13, 1761." ** Affidavit made according 
to Act Woollen." 

This was an Act of Charles II., to promote the 


wool industry, which ordered that every corpse should 
be buried entirely in woollen material, even the coffin 
lined with same. This Act became gradually less and 
less enforced, but was not actually repealed till 1815 ! 

** On January 14th, 1801, Barbara, widow of John 
Girle, aged 86, from Henley, Oxon." His widow, 
therefore, survived him forty years. 

The following journal of Caroline Girle, kept by 
desire of her father, is the first MSS. of our heroine. 
The spelling and wording is very old fashioned, but 
I have adhered to the actual text, which, as time goes 
on, the reader will perceive gradually forms into a 
more modern style. 





Lincoln's Inn Fields, 
When we went with Mr. Jackson's family into Nor- 1756 
folk, my father, not being of our party, desired me 
to write him an account of our tour, and to be par- 
ticular in my description of places or things that 
might give me entertainment. From those letters 
I collected the following concise journal ; if any one 
chuses to peruse it, I've only to call their friendship 
to my aid, which, like affection in a parent, ever 
draws a veil over errors unintended. 

Mr. Jackson having been ill the former part of 
this summer, we did not set out till the 1st of Sep- 
tember, but the weather being delightful, and that, a 
peculiar pleasure in travelling, we regretted not that 
the autumn was now approaching ; a happy chear- 
fulness reigned uninterrupted in our little society, 
consisting of Mr. and Miss Jackson, my mother, and 
self, in one coach, young Mr Jackson on horseback, 
and their other coach followed with servants. We 



1756 breakfasted at Epping, and then I believe had almost 
got clear of that smoaky fogg which for some miles 
intails itself on the Metropolis. Mr. Jackson being 
still an invalid, we went no further that night than 
Hockerill, a bad town in the county of Hertfordshire, 
which itself is woody and pretty. We passed Thorley 
Hall, formerly a seat of Mr. Raper's,^ whose woods, 
cut into fine walks, are greatly admired. I remember 
thinking it a charming place, but one is naturally 
partial to the spots where one has passed our child- 
hood, and I used to be there every summer. The 
next day we breakfasted at Chesterford and dined at 
Newmarket, famous. I believe, for nothing but the 
races twice a year near it. From leaving this town 
the face of the country is quite changed ; before, 
our views were excessively limited, now quite un- 
confined, though far from pleasing, as for twenty 
miles you go over the heath of Newmarket. Lay 
at Barton Mills, and when we set out the follow- 
ing morning, having lost sight of the village, we 
came on those well-known dismal Brand Sands, 
in the county of Suffolk, where for thirteen miles 
you have not literally one tree, no verdure, nothing 
animate or inanimate, to divert your eye from the 
barren soil. It is indeed a dismal spot in its present 
state. I was just reading an account where *tis said 
it was once a fine fertile country, but, by an amazing 
high wind, these horrid sands were blown over from 
the fens of Lincolnshire. A marvellous event, no 
doubt, and were I unfortunate enough to reside near 
there, I should certainly pray for a contrary, just of 

' Who left it to his nephew, Sir John Grant of Kothiemurchus, who 
sold it to Lord Ellenborough in 1807. Rapers, an old Buckinghamshire 
family, of Norman descent. 


equal velocity, to convey them back to their original 1756 
home. From this account it will easily be believed 
the sight of the town of Brand was a most pleasing 
one ; not but we had books, a pack of cards, to amuse 
the old gentleman when he liked it, and I think two 
or three rubbers of whist was played in these thirteen 
dull miles. At Brand we breakfasted, and regained 
the life and spirits we seemed to have lost from our 
former slow motion, for to make the road still more 
intolerable, one's animals were obliged to a creeping 
pace for the whole way, but in a few miles of our 
evening s journey we had an agreeable contrast, and, 
to express myself in a style as much elevated as 
ourselves, we once more beheld the several beauties 
of the vegetable world, and were again saluted by 
the winged songsters ; in short, every object appeared 
a wonderful phenomenon. We dined at Swaffham, 
in Norfolk, nine miles only from Mr. Jackson's. We 
staid there some hours, and got to Wesenham Hall 
early in the evening, not too dark but that I could 
see the situation was pleasing. The house modern 
and elegant, with every convenience to give it the 
title of a good one (for, tho' you^ are not unacquainted 
with it, my journal would be deficient if without this 
description). It stands in a pretty park, beyond that 
a heath, which they have planted promiscuously with 
clumps of firs. Beyond that the country rises to the 
view. On one side lay the grove and gardens, and 
behind the village, than which nothing can be in a 
more rural taste. According to annual custom, the 
Vicar, and his wife, and near tenants, were at the 
hall ready to receive us. You know, my dear sir, the 
hospitable manner Mr. Jackson always lives in, and 

* Meaning Mr. Girle, her father. 


1756 will not wonder at the joy expressed on his arrival. 
Never did landlord seem more beloved, or indeed 
deserve to be so, for he is a most worthy man, and 
in however high a stile a man lives in in town, which 
he certainly does, real benevolence is more distin- 
guishable in a family at their country-seat, and none 
do more good than that where we now are. Then 
everything here is regularity itself, but the masters 
method is, I take it, now become the method of the 
servants by use as well as choice. Nothing but death 
ever makes a servant leave them. The old house- 
keeper has now been there one-and-fifty years ; the 
butler two- or three-and-thirty ; poor Mrs. Jackson's 
maid, now Miss Jackson's, twenty-four, having been 
married to one of the footmen (their daughter is 
grown up, and is one of the housemaids). Mrs. 
Bridges, {n^e Jackson), when she married, took her 
servant with her, but 'tis really a pleasure to see them 
all so happy. I was surprised to see them all, except 
on Sundays, in green stuff gowns, and on my inquir- 
ing of Miss Jackson how they all happened to fix so 
on one particular colour, she told me a green camblet 
for a gown used for many years to be an annual 
present of her mother s to those servants who behaved 
well, and had been so many years in her family, and 
that now indeed, as they all behaved well, and had 
lived there much longer than the limited term, this 
was constantly their old master's New Year gift I 
thought this in Mr. Jackson a pretty compliment 
to his lady's memory, as well as testimony of the 
domestics still deserving of his good opinion. They 
seem to have a vast deal of company, but my mother 
says not half they used to have in Mrs. Jackson's life- 
time, when the Orford, Leicester, and Townsend 


families and theirs, used to meet almost every week 1756 
at each other's houses, but then indeed there was 
young people at each, which generally makes a lively 

Lord Townsend is not now down at Rainham,^ 
which is very near here, nor are the Leicesters at 
Holkham. Lord Orford was here the other day, 
and yesterday we had Mr. and Mrs. Lee Warner of 
Walsingham,^ and their three sons to dinner, a Mr. 
Spilman too, whose new odd house we are soon to go 
and see. On Sundays the tenants dine here in turn, 
and always the clergyman and his wife, a good kind 
of ordinary couple. The church is indeed superior 
to the preaching ; but Norfolk is remarkable for fine 
churches. This at Weasenham has two aisles, and 
really one is amazed at its appearance, — has been built 
about seven hundred years. The Vicarage-house I 
cannot say is answerable, for in my life I never saw 
one so very despicable ; 'tis literally a poor cottage, 
and even thatched. We have now a Captain Hamble- 
ton,^ and a Mr. Host here, and Mr. and Mrs. Carr 
and family dine with us to-morrow. Mr. Jackson's 
friends are so kind to come to him, though he tells 
them his health won't permit him to return their visits 
this summer. You know how he loves company at 
home, especially when he can have so good a plea as 
at present for not having the fuss of dining out, as he 
styles it. If twenty people came in as we were sitting 
down to table, his dinners are so good they would 

* Rainham Hall, erected by Inigo Jones, 1630; enlarged by Viscount 
Townsend, Secretary of State to George I. and II. 

* Walsingham Priory, once famous for its shrine of the Virgin ; an 
object of pilgrimage. 

^ Probably Hamilton, as through the Memoirs Hamilton is constantly 
so spelled. 


1756 need no alteration; but the larder is really quite a 
sight, and different from any I ever saw. Tis a 
large good room they had built on purpose, in an 
open green court, by the kitchen-garden, with every 
possible convenience ; and I believe always full of 
everything in season, and the old gentleman often 
makes us walk there after breakfast that we may all, 
as he says, have what we like for dinner. The venison 
and game now in it is astonishing. The Norfolk 
mutton, too, you know, is famous ; but theirs particu- 
larly so. They kill all their own, and never eat it in the 
parlour under three weeks, but in their larder it might 
keep six, they say. We went the other day to see 
Houghton Hall,^ the seat of Lord Orford, about seven 
miles from hence ; the building is stone, and stands in 
a park of a thousand acres. Its outside has rather too 
heavy an appearance, on the in, the fitting up and 
furniture very superb ; and the cornishes and mould- 
ings of all the apartments being gilt, it makes the 
whole what I call magnificently glaringly, more 
especially as the rooms are, instead of white, painted 
dark green olive ; but this most likely will be soon 
altered. The body of the house consists of sixteen 
rooms on a floor, besides two large wings, the one 
offices, the other, the famed picture gallery, seventy- 
five feet in length. *Tis impossible to conceive how 
strikingly fine this gallery of paintings'" is, far indeed 
beyond my describing, for I can't even describe one 
quarter of the pleasure I had in viewing them ; but 

* Houghton Hall, built by Sir Robert Walpole between 1722-38, 
from designs by Colin Campbell. Belongs now to Marquis of Cholmon- 
deley by inheritance. 

2 This famous gallery, sold by George, third Earl Orford, in 1779, to 
the Empress Catherine of Russia, to the annoyance of his family and the 
loss of the nation. 


yet I am sure you can guess, knowing what an en- 1756 
thusiastic daughter yours is when pictures are the 
subject ; but this Lord's is, I believe, esteemed the 
best collection we have in England. I shall bring 
you home a catalogue, as I've taken the pains 
to copy a written one the late Lord gave to Mr. 
Jackson ; every room indeed is adorn'd by them, so 
that altogether Houghton is exceedingly well worth 

Since my last letter we have had company every 
day to dinner, as Sir William Turner and gentlemen 
that were with him ; another day Sir Harry and Lady 
Lestrange, Captain Wilson, &c. ; a third, the Croft 
family. One morning we went to pay a droll visit to 
see an odd house, of a still odder Mr. Spilman I before 
mentioned, a most strange old bachelor of vast fortune, 
but indeed Til not fall in love with him. We were 
introduced to him in the library, where he seemed 
deep in study (for they say he is really clever), sitting 
in a jockey-cap and white stiff dog's gloves. I think I 
never shall forget his figure at that instant ; but I 
must, in order to give you that of his house, equally 
out of the common style as himself, but to see the 
man one no longer wonders at the oddity of the edifice 
he has just finished. *Tis in a large park, its form the 
half H. You ascend a flight of twenty-one steps, 
which, as they don't spread out as usual towards the 
bottom, seems as if you were mounting a perpendicular 
staircase ; you enter a hall, striking from its strange 
dimensions, being five cubes of eighteen feet, so it's 
ninety feet long by eighteen ! and might rather be 
termed a gallery. Besides this (as 'tis only one floor 
and no staircase), there is a saloon, library, two 
parlours, and three bed-chambers, all the offices and 


1756 servants' rooms are underground. The chimney- 
pieces, tables, &c., are of green marble from Sweden ; 
all the doors solid walnut-tree, off the estate, and 
every room paved with Ketton stone. This, as we 
ventured to tell him, we thought too cool, but his 
reply was, ** I never catch colds"; indeed, we might 
suppose from his looks ' that he was not like other 
mortals ; in short 'tis impossible to innumerate each 
oddity throughout the place, so that I shall not 
attempt it. . .' . We have had Dr. and Mrs. 
Hammond here ; he is one of the Prebends of 
Norwich, and a nephew of Lord Orford's, she a 
niece of Lord Walpoles. I had heard young Jack- 
son, who, you know, is particularly clever himself, 
talk much of the understanding, and ready wit of 
this lady. She is indeed amazingly sensible, and 
many lively conversations have pass'd between those 
two, to our very high entertainment. We have had 
Sir Wm. Harbord here for some days. Sir William, 
and all the families I've mentioned as visiting here, 
most obligingly insisted on seeing us at each of their 
houses, but as we could not at this season go and 
return at night to the more distant ones, and could 
not go to some without returning all, we declined 
at once all these obliging invitations ; indeed, as we 
came down now merely to keep the old gentleman 
company, it would have been cruel to have left him 
so many days by himself; he would make us go 
one morning tho' to see Lord Leicester's ; to this 
we consented, tho' eighteen miles off; as we had 
heard so much of this place we could not quit Nor- 
folk, which we now talked of, in a few days without 
going there ; so last Friday we set out very early 
in the morning, ordering dinner later than usual. 


The name of the magnificent seat is Holkham ;^ two 1756 
miles before you come to the house is a grand 
triumphal arch,^ the rusticated ornaments of which 
are very fine ; from this you have the new planta- 
tions, which when grown will have a noble effect, 
on each side for two miles, in front a grand obelisk,^ 
a church,* the numerous buildings in the grounds, 
and the whole terminated by the sea, tho' that is 
distant ; at the end of this avenue are two lodges. 
And now entering the park, you have a view of a 
stone building, esteemed the most elegant of its 
kind in England. It has already been thirty years 
begun, and is not yet completed ; but when that 
era arrives it will be magnificent indeed ! It ex- 
tends 380 feet in front, the grand hall is the height 
of the house, which is fifty feet ; round it is a colo- 
nade of alabaster pillars which give it a noble appear- 
ance. . . . Fronting you is three steps along a vast 
way into the hall, which they call the Tribune. This 
rise has a pretty effect ; from this you come into a 
fine saloon, hung with crimson velvet, the cornishes 
richly gilt, many capital pictures standing there to 
be put up. On one side of the saloon is a dressing- 
room, bed-chamber, and inner apartment, called the 
Duke of Cumberland's, all to be hung with and 
furnished as the saloon ; on the other side are the 
same rooms, called the Duke of Bedford's, hung 
and furnished with crimson damask. A gallery 120 
feet long is of its kind the most superbly elegant 

* Holkham, built by first Viscount Coke, afterwards Earl of Leicester ; 
house built about 1744 ; architect, Kent. 

^ Arch designed by Wyattville. 

' Obelisk eighty feet high ; first work erected in 1729. 

* Of the fourteenth century with additions in fifteenth and sixteenth ; 
dedicated to St. Withburga ; restored 1868, at cost of ;£ 10,000. 


1756 I ever saw, but the whole house deserves that dis- 
tinction. The gallery is painted a dead white, with 
ornaments of gilding ; at each end is an octagon, 
the one fitted up as a library, the other with busts, 
bronzes, and curiosities too numerous to mention. 
This is the centre of the house, besides are four 
wings ; one contains all the offices in general, all 
answerable to the rest ; such an amazing large and 
good kitchen I never saw, everything in it so nice 
and clever ; but IVe heard Mr. Jackson talk of Lady 
Leicester's great notability ; they are there often, you 
know, for a week together ; she never misses going 
round this wing every morning, and one day he 
was walking by the windows, and saw her ladyship 
in her kitchen at six o'clock (a.m.), thinking all her 
guests safe in bed, I suppose. Her dairy is the 
neatest place you can imagine, the whole marble ; 
in Norfolk they never skim their cream off, as in 
other places, but let the milk run from it ; these 
things here are all too of marble, so that it all looks 
so delicate, and the butter made into such pretty 
patts hardly larger than a sixpence. The second 
wing is called the Chapel wing, tho* that is not yet 
built. The third is now finishing with grand sets 
of apartments for the company they may have with 
them ; and in the fourth wing is the eating-room, 
drawing-room, library, bed-chambers, dressing-rooms, 
constantly used by Lord and Lady Leicester ^ them- 
selves, and in a closet here of her ladyships we 
saw the miniature pictures of the family for a series 
of years past, done by the best hands. In this little 
cabinet, too, are a thousand curiosities of various 

' Was Lady Mary Tufton, fourth daughter ; co-heir of Thomas, 
sixth Ear] of Thanet 


kinds, among the pictures was their daughter-in- 1756 
law, the beautiful Lady Mary Coke^ and their son* 
Lord Coke, who they had lately lost, to their inex- 
pressible grief, being their only child. He and his 
lady I think were far from being happy. The situa- 
tion of Holkham I don't say much of; the grounds 
indeed are laid out with taste, and everything done 
that can be to strike the eye, but still it must boast 
more of art than Nature's charms, and to me the 
reverse is so much more pleasing ; but indeed I do not 
admire Norfolk's country ; 'tis dreary, 'tis unpleasing ; 
in short, I wished a house like Lord Leicester's in 
a spot more delightful, more answerable to itself. 
We had a breakfast at Holkham in the genteelest 
taste, with all kinds of cakes and fruit, placed un- 
desired in an apartment we were to go through, 
which, as the family were from home, I thought was 
very clever in the housekeeper, for one is so often 
asked by people whether one chuses chocolate, which 
forbidding word puts (as intended), a negative on 
the question. The roads being not very good, we 
had made poor Mr. Jackson wait dinner some hours ; 
but as we expressed ourselves so pleased with our 
morning's excursion he was happy. We found Captain 
Hambleton with him. The next day Sir Harry and 
Lady Lestrange came to dinner, and the following 
ones we staid many came to take their leave of this 
family before their return to town, as Dr. and Mrs. 
Hammond, Mr. Host, Mrs. Langley, the Crofts, Mrs. 
Rinks, and others. On Tuesday young Jackson is 
to go to pay a visit to Sir Thomas Hare's * family, 

^ Lady Mary Campbell, daughter and co-heir of John, Duke of 
Argyll and Greenwich. 

* Edward, Viscount Coke, died S.P. 1753. 
' Stowe Hall, near Downham. 


1756 and meet us on Friday on the road at Hockerill. 
Saturday morning we are all to pay a visit to Mr. 
Jackson at Theobalds, and shall be in town to dinner 
about five, where we shall be most happy in seeing 
you after so long an absence, and Tm desired by 
the family not to forget that they insist on seeing 
you at their house at the time of our arrival. And 
now, my dear sir, I've given, as you desired, a sort 
of journal of our tour. You must pardon my many 
mistakes, as I think I may plead you are the author 
of them alll However, as apologies only would 
innumerate them, I shall say nothing more than 
that six weeks cannot be spent more agreeably than 
at Weasenham Hall, though the description might 
have been more entertaining from an abler pen than 
that of your ever obliged and dutiful, 

Caroline Girle. 

The counties went through were Essex, Hertford- 
shire, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk, Norfolk. 

Towns we stopped at. 

Distance from London. 

Epping .... 

. 17] 



. 30 


Chesterford . 

. 45 





Brand .... 

• 79 





Wesenham Hall . 



On our return through Chesterford in October, it 
was most exceedingly pretty to see all the fields 
covered with saffron, which, being in itself a beautiful 
purple and white flower like a crocus, it has a very 
pleasing effect. Mr. Jackson did tell me what the 
clergymen's tythe of saffron only came to in this 
parish, but I thought it, I remember, quite incredible. 



Between the tour in Norfolk and the next journal 1757 
of travel, the following extracts are taken from Miss 
Girle's dairy : — 

March i^thy 1757. — Admiral Byng shot on board 
the Monarque at twelve at noon. From his walking 
out of the cabin to his being taken back dead, ex- 
ceeded not two minutes. Happy that a scene so 
shocking could be so soon closed. 

April 2pthy 1757. — Went to see the Earl of 
Chesterfields new house in South Audley Street. 
The whole very magnificent. 




In one of those delightful morns when Nature 
is decked in every pleasing ornament we quitted the 
tumultuous scene, left all the pomp and grandeur of 
the great Metropolis for prospects more serenely gay, 
blended with every elegant simplicity of rural charms. 
The variegated objects that now presented themselves 
to view were, as Milton finely expresses it — 

" Hill, dale, and shady woods, and sunny plains. 
And liquid copse of murmuring streams ; by these 
Creatures that liv'd, and woo'd, and walked, or flew. 
Birds on the branches warbling, all things smiFd 
With fragrance, and with joy my heart overflowed." 

I've so great a partiality for the country that I could 
not help inserting here the above five lines of this 
celebrated author, in which he gives one so strong 
an idea of its several beauties, but I digress no 
longer, and resume the subject of our journey. In 


1757 the county of Hertford, about twenty-four miles 
from London, is a town called Hatfield. Our route 
being before fixed, this was the place we proposed 
to breakfast at. While there, travellers being gene- 
rally desirous to view each object that is deemed 
curious, we went to see a monument in the church 
in memory of the first Earl of Salisbury, which we 
were told was worth seeing. It was so, being of 
statuary marble and kept extremely neat. Formerly 
a royal palace added lustre to this town, at which 
Edward VI. was brought up and educated. We that 
day dined at Baldock,^ drank tea at Eton^ in Bed- 
fordshire, and by eight in the evening got to Bug- 
den * in Huntingdonshire ; in the time necessary for 
preparing supper we went to take an outside view of 
an old palace now belonging to the Bishop of Lincoln. 
It appears to have been a fine building, and place of 
great security, by the height of its surrounding walls, 
with a moat and drawbridge, to prevent at pleasure 
any one's approach. After our walk we again returned 
to our inn. The next morn we breakfasted at Stilton,* 
and proposed taking Burleigh Hall in our way to 
Stamford, tho' we feared obtaining a sight of it, the 
present Lord having not long been in possession. 
The whole was then repairing, and we had been told 
he was not fond of strangers seeing it while it bore 
so ruinous an appearance. However, we were more 
fortunate than we expected, for as we were walking in 

* A market-town fifteen miles north-west from Hertford. 

* Eaton-Socon. 

^ Buckden, once a favourite residence of the Bishops of Lincoln ; 
granted to them by Abbot of Ely, temp. Henry I. 

* Stilton gave its name to the famous cheese, first made by Mrs. 
Paulet of Wymondham, Leicestershire, who sold it to Cooper Thomhill 
of the Bell Inn there : now made in Leicestershire. 


the gardens, standing still on a nearer approach to 1757 
the house (which seems almost of itself a little town), 
Lord Exeter^ happened to be overlooking his work- 
men, and reading, as I suppose, curiosity in our 
countenances, politely asked if the ladies chose to 
see it, our reply being in the affirmative, he himself 
informed us where was the most easy entrance. The 
rooms are spacious and lofty, the staircase grand, 
which with many apartments, the late Earls closet, 
the ceilings, hall, chapel, &c., are all painted by Vario,^ 
whom his Lordship kept twelve years in his family, 
wholly employ 'd in them (allowing him a coach, 
horses, servants, a table, and considerable pension). 
The front towards the garden is the most ancient and 
noble structure that can be imagined. Indeed, from 
wherever you see it, the towers, pinnacles, and large 
spire over the centre give it an air too grand to be 
described by pen. The whole is of freestone. 'Twas 
built by Sir William Cecil in the time of Elizabeth. 
He was afterwards by her created Baron Burleigh. 
There are many good pictures, but then not hung up 
as intended to be. Having spent some time in seeing 
Burleigh Hall, we proceeded on to Stamford, a town 
in Northamptonshire, about a mile distant. We went 
thro' part of Rutlandshire. That afternoon drank tea 
at Colesworth,^ and got to Grantham, in Lincolnshire, 
that night. The next day, being Sunday, we pro- 
posed staying at the above place till Monday morn. 
The church* at Grantham (at which we were twice on 
Sunday), is a Gothic structure deserving observation, 
and would have made a very fine appearance, had they 

* Brownlow, ninth Earl of Exeter. 

* Antonio Verrio, celebrated painter, time of Charles II. 
' Colsterworth ; Sir Isaac Newton bom there. 

* Dedicated to St. Wulfram; a church here before the Conquest. 


1/ 57 not concealed it from view by other buildings till one 
is within a few steps of the grand entrance. This for 
the honour of the town is rather unfortunate, as 'tis 
eclipsing its only beauty. In the evening we went to 
Bel ton House, the seat of Lady Cust. 'Tis nothing 
more than a good family house. Two things relative 
to it we were desired to remember, viz., that the 
original of sash windows was at the erecting of this 
edifice in Charles I. s time ; the second, that from a 
temple in the garden called Belle Mount you may 
see seven counties at once, a thing from one spot 
thought very remarkable. Having stayed pretty late 
at Belton, we only got back just at supper-time, and 
early next day quitted Grantham, breakfasted at 
Newark, Nottinghamshire, an ancient and neat town 
situated on the Trent ; formerly, though now ruinous, 
there was a castle there, built by Alexander, Bishop 
of Lincoln.^ We dined at Carlton, drank tea at Tad- 
caster.- From this place we had nine miles only to go 
before we reached a city so famous that our expecta- 
tions had form'd an idea of a place that would almost 
equal the grand Metropolis ; but, York, I must depre- 
ciate you so far as to give it as my opinion that by 
many degrees you merit not the title of the least 
resemblance. We entered its gates about seven in 
the evening, not an hour so late (at this season) as to 
give the city the dull aspect it then seem'd to wear ; 
but we had a reason assigned to us for this, that I 
believe might be a just one, viz., that in summer all 
the principal inhabitants retire into the country. How- 
ever to us it appeared a most indifferent town. 'Tis 
situated on the confluence of the Ouse and Foss rivers, 

' Time of King Stephen. 

* Ancient market-town in West Riding. 


and reckon'd a wholsom and clear air. The streets i757 
(hardly deserving such an appellation), are extremely 
^ narrow, the houses seemingly very indifferent, and 
indeed the whole city, three things excepted (viz. 
the Cathedral, Castle, and Assembly Room), a perfect 
contrast to what we thought it had been. The 
Minster is indeed a building curiously magnificent. 
I think it surpasses, at least on the outside, West- 
minster Abbey. *Twas rebuilt in the reign of 
Stephen, having been burnt down with the whole city 
before the Conquest. The carving in stone is exces- 
sively fine, and what with the solemnity of the struc- 
ture, joined to that of the organ, which at our entrance 
was playing, I think I never experienced a more 
pleasing awful satisfaction than at the first view 
of this noble Cathedral. From hence we went to 
the Castle. ' Tis now a prison, and may be styl'd 
a grand one, the felons having a large place by 
day allotted for them in the open air, a liberty at 
other places they have not room to allow these 
wretches. We saw above forty then there. The 
sight of so many unhappy objects greatly depress'd 
us, tho', strange as it appeared, but one, of so great 
a number had a countenance even seemingly dejected, 
nor look'd as if they felt for themselves, what even 
our pity for their supposed distress made us ex- 
perience. Having staid at the Castle a very short 
time, we went next to the Assembly Room, the third 
and last place worthy our notice. 'Tis in form an 
Egyptian Hall ; its dimensions 1 1 2 feet by 40, and 
30 in height ; the seats crimson damask, and all the 
furniture quite in taste, and 'tis called the completest 
ball-room in England. By Wednesday noon we had 
gone over the renown'd city. It was, it seems, before 



1757 It was burnt down almost four times as large as at 
present. We quitted it about six on Wednesday 
evening, proposing in our way to Malton that night 
to see the seat of Lord Carlisle. Castle Howard^ is 
fifteen miles distant from York ; the situation pleasing. 
The house is of vast extent (340 feet), and makes a 
fine appearance at the distance, but I think the rooms 
in general too small, though in the wing now build- 
ing there seems by the plan some fine apartments to 
be intended. The whole is of stone, the furniture 
is magnificent, and there are many curiosities that 
my Lord ^ brought over with him fifteen years since 
from Italy and other countries, such as pictures, busts, 
figures of oriental alabaster, and above thirty diffe- 
rent sorts of Egyptian marbles, with other things too 
numerous to mention, as valuable as ornamental, 
having a fine effect as one passes through the several 
apartments. The house stands in a wood ; the park 
is a very fine one ; in that is a grand mausoleum, but 
it was unfortunately too late for our walking to it, 
as the evening drew on before we had hardly seen the 
house. We lay at Malton, five miles from thence, break- 
fasted next at Yettingham, and so on to Scarborough. 
'Tis impossible to conceive a sweeter prospect than 
• one has of this town when at about half a mile dis- 
tant. The ruins of a fine old castle on a prodigious 
eminence forms a most pleasing point of view, the 
town seemingly scatter d on the brow of the same 
hill to complete its beauty, and the sea at a small 
distance terminates the whole. We got there about 
two ; after adapting our dress to that of a public place, 

* Castle Howard, built about 1702 by Sir John Vanbrugh for Charles, 
third Earl of Carlisle. 

^ Henry, fourth Earl of Carlisle. 


caird on some friends then there, who shewed us the 1 7 5 7 
rooms, informed us of the customs of the place, and 
made the short time we stayed pass most agreeably. 
In the evening we walked up to the Castle, but the 
fogg was so great from the sea as totally to hinder 
the extensive view they assured us the immense 
height afforded. About a mile from the town is their 
famous medicinal springs,^ said to partake of the 
different qualities of vitriol, alum, iron, nitre, and salt. 
The company meet here before breakfast to drink the 
waters. The next morning we were of the group in 
this agreeable walk on the sands, though fatiguing 
to invalids, as from the town one descends above a 
hundred steps. At the Spaw is two rooms, one call'd 
the gentleman's, the other the ladies', and a terrass 
commanding a most delightful prospect. At our 
return to our lodgings we found Mr. and Mrs. 
Handley, but had their company only for that 
evening, tho' some hopes of again meeting in York- 
shire. As we left Scarborough the following day, 
lay at Whittwell, the morning after breakfasted at 
York, dined at Ferry Bridge, where Mr. Pem. Milnes 
and Miss Slater met us to conduct us to the house of 
the former at Wakefield, the end of our intended tour 
for the present, as we were there to meet our friend 
Mrs. Hooper, and had promised to spend a month 
with her in visiting her nieces, the two Mrs. Milnes. 
She was got there a day or two before us, and we 
arrived just as the family were sitting down to supper. 
We had great pleasure in the meeting after a very 
long absence, and spent our time most agreeably 
during our stay, tho* we could have wished not quite 

^ There are two springs. They consist of carbonate and sulphates of 
lime and magnesia, not vitriol. 


1757 so much visiting as we were obliged to give way to. 
A few days after we came, my father went with the 
gentlemen to Lord Rockingham's, and returned vastly 
pleased with his visit, which was two days, and with 
Went worth House. Another day they took him to 
dine at Sir Roland Whin's. We went one day to 
Westerton, Mr. Birt s, a gentleman of large fortune, 
who has since bought and rebuilt in a superb manner 
Wenvo Castle, in Glamorganshire — I hear a most 
delightful spot. I cannot say as much for Westerton, 
or village, surrounded by coal-yards ; but as sinking 
these pits raised Wenvo Castle, neither Mr. Birt or 
his family, I dare say, think them odious. We had 
the curiositv to walk and take a near outside view of 
one seventy yards deep. The manner they work 
them is strange, and not a little dangerous, as they 
are obliged to have candles, and sometimes with a 
roof so low that the men dig on their knees. This 
in a place where there is nothing but coal makes it 
surprising there is not frequent accidents. They have 
two boxes which are alternately pulled up and down 
by puUies worked by a horse, which goes round and 
round in a sort of a well. In short, the whole process is 
curiously frightful, and yet Mr. Birt told us many ladies 
even venture down the pits to see the entire manner 
of it. This I think one should rather be excused. 

At our return home that evening we were talk- 
ing of the Moravians and the oddness of their wor- 
ship, and Mr. Milnes, who most obligingly wished 
us to see everything worth observation, told us 
he really thought we should be entertained. To 
see anything of their manner one must be there 
on a Sunday, and the morrow being so, we agreed 
for once, as we none of us usually travelled on 


Sunday, to make it a day of amusement — a thing 1757 
always to be avoided, in my opinion, by people of 
a station in life to make any day their own, and 
I ever am surprised 'tis not thought rather vulgar . 
than fashionable by the great to make that day a 
day of travelling, as it always is done, when 'tis the 
only one the lowest traders can spare to take their 
pleasure in. Early the next morning we set out and 
got to Pudsey ^ about ten. The situation is charming. 
On a pleasing eminence commanding the most de- 
lightful prospect they have erected three houses. 
The centre one is their chapel and house of their 
clergyman, in which he only and all their children 
constantly reside. The house on the one side is all 
for unmarried men, that on the other for the single 
Sisters, as 'tis call'd. Those bound by the matri- 
monial shackles reside in or near the village of 
Pudsey, but send all their children to the centre 
mansion to be properly educated in their religion. 
What that is, I never heard determined ; some people 
imagine it borders on the Roman Catholic. As we 
ascended the hill their band of music struck up, and 
in my life I think I never was so charmed. It con- 
sists of organ, French horns, clarinets, and flutes, 
hautboys, and every kind of instrument, joyn'd by 
the most harmonious voices one ever heard. The 
congregation were just enter d the chapel as we did, 
their men ranging themselves on forms at one side, 
the women on the other. They were extremely civil 

' The Moravian settlement here was founded in 1748. The Bohemian 
or Moravian Brethren date back to the tenth century, but were not 
established in England till the middle of the eighteenth century. Their 
belief is very like the Church of England. They have an episcopate, 
and claim to be an original Church, uncontaminated with Roman 


1757 to us as strangers, seating us according to the above 
method. The clergyman at first got into the pulpit 
and read some sentences from a book which the 
people made responses to, and often sang in chorus, 
accompanied by the full band of music, which had an 
effect most amazingly fine indeed. After, the same man 
preach'd a sermon replete with incoherent nonsense, 
all extemporary ; the text was ** My Lord, and my 
God." After the sermon the children are admitted, 
and not till then ; they walk in two and two, and the 
clergyman being come down from the pulpit, they 
are placed before him on forms. They first sang 
very prettily ; he afterwards talked to them near a 
quarter of an hour, but on subjects far above the 
comprehension of their tender years. After this they 
sang again, and then retired in the order they came, 
looking most beautifully, being most sweet children, 
and the dress of the female infants adding to their 
beauty. The men and boys have nothing unusual 
in their dress, but that of the women has something 
in it extremely odd yet pretty, plain to a degree yet 
pleasing, because accompanied by the utmost neat- 
ness, an ornament ever adorning to the meanest habit ; 
their gowns white linen, close to the shape, their 
cap comes over the face like our largest French 
nightcaps, rounding over the cheek and coming 
down in a peak over the forehead, and sets close 
to the face, no hair being seen. To distinguish the 
ladies, all married Sisters tie the cap under the chin 
with a large bunch of blue ribbons, the widows white, 
and the single Sisters with pink, but the knots round 
the caps of all is muslin, broad-hemmed. We were 
now told the service of the morning was over. We 
wanted to see the sleeping-room of the women, but 


were told it could not be seen till after dinner, and 1757 
we had much too far to go home for us to stay longer. 
We had been told it was well worth seeing. The odd 
description we had of it is as follows : — Eighty beds, 
each just large enough for one person, all of white 
dimity, and a most perfect neatness all throughout 
the apartment. Every night one woman walks up 
and down this gallery with a lighted taper in her 
hand till daybreak, and this ceremony they perform 
by turn. We spent an hour in walking round and 
making all inquiries about this odd sect of people, and 
came away charmed with the situation and music, 
if but little edified with their religion. So far indeed 
we agreed that the Moravians and monks, bore a 
resemblance to each other, as both chose the finest 
spots for their monastic residences, that the most 
pleasing objects without, might compensate for the 
gloomy ones within. We dined at Leeds on our way. 
The next morning my father left us, being obliged 
to return to London, but he went round by Mr. 
Slater s in Derbyshire for a few days. That day we 
dined at a family's near Leeds, a town very popular, 
and carrying on a vast trade in the woollen manu- 
factures, but nothing extraordinary in its appearance. 
Having spent a fortnight now at Mr. Pem. Milnes, 
Mrs. Hooper, Mr. and Mrs. Handley (who were 
guests come from Scarborough), Mr. and Miss Slater, 
my mother and myself, adjourned, according to pro- 
mise, .to the other Mr. Milnes, where we spent a second 
most pleasing fourteen days, the two families being 
always together in a continual state of visiting; but 
the destin'd time of our party leaving Yorks for 
Derbyshire being arrived, we set off to see other 
obliging friends, tho' not without concern at quitting 



1757 these who had so hospitably entertained us. We got 
to Mr. Slater's the day following. We found Derby- 
shire not indeed so extensive a county, but as more 
romantic it s more pleasing than Yorkshire, and though 
at the same time remarkable for producing many 
commodities in great plenty. The finest lead in 
England, iron, &c., 'tis full of quarries of free stone, 
greatstone, brimstone, black and grey marble, crystal, 
alabaster, and sometimes there is found antimony. 
The vales produce great quantities of corn, and the 
mountainous parts coal-pits ; but what adds beauty to 
this county is the parks and forests, and inequality of 
hills and dales that so diversify the landscape. About 
a week after our large party arrived at Mr. Slater s 
there came two other ladies and four gentlemen to the 
races, which were to begin on the next day. One of the 
later was Mr. Pem. Milnes, whose pleasure at seeing 
his only child, a sweet girl of three years old, gave us 
all the highest satisfaction. She had been here ten 
months with her grandmama, on account of the small- 
pox being at Wakefield. On the Wednesday, having 
dined early, we set off in different carriages, and seven 
gentlemen on horseback for the course, about three, 
came back to tea about eight. Sir Harry Hemloak, 
his two sisters, and more company returned with us, 
and about ten we went to the Assembly Room, where 
the Duke of Devonshire^ always presided as master 
of the ceremonies, and after the ball gave an elegant 
cold supper, where, by his known politeness and affa- 
bility, it would be unnecessary for me to say how 
amiable he made himself to the company. We got 
home about five. The next evening were at the 
concert, as the same company usually met at that on 

^ William, fourth Duke of Devonshire. 


the second night, and on the third day again went to i7S7 
the course. There came back with us to tea the 
Duke of Devonshire, Mr and Miss Simpson,^ and two 
Miss Bourns, the first young lady a most beautiful 
girl indeed. That evening's ball was equally brilliant 
as the first night, and both gave us as strangers a 
high idea of these annual assemblies at Chesterfield, 
which town in itself has but a poor appearance. I 
must not forget to mention, what indeed I had before 
read of, the oddity of the spire of the church there, 
which, indeed, 'tis hardly possible not to observe, as 
from whatever side of the town you view it, it always 
appears leaning towards you, and very crooked. 
Whether at first purposely contrived so as to raise 
wonder at the builder, or, as it is lead, whether the 
sun may not have warp't it, seems uncertain, as the 
country people differ greatly in their sentiments on 
the subject. One afternoon we were most agreeably 
entertained at Mrs. Bourn's, where we went to tea. 
Their gardens are charming, and as we drank tea in 
one of the buildings, the family being very musical 
and charming voices, the young ladies sang, while the 
gentlemen accompanied on their German flutes. This 
little concert took up the heat of the day, after which 
we walk'd over the grounds. When in a little temple, 
on entering we laughed exceedingly at the rural 
politeness of our beaux ; but as gentlemen of the 
army are always gallant, we were the less surprised at 
our elegant collation of fruit, cakes, cream, placed in 
the most neat and rustic manner imaginable. This 
made us rather late home ; but we had passed the 
afternoon and evening too agreeably to repine at that. 
Some of our race party had now left us, among 

' Afterwards Lady Bridgman. 


1 757 them a most agreeable young lady, Miss Gisbourne. I 
remember that day the neighbourhood were a little 
alarmed at hearing above a hundred and fifty men, 
with oaken clubs, had entered Chesterfield, and were 
making a vast riot. The gentlemen were assembled 
on a turnpike meeting, and these fellows were certain 
it was about the Militia Act^ which it seems they had 
a most unconquerable aversion to, and were deter- 
mined to oppose. It was some hours before they 
would hear at all ; but when convinced they had 
been misinformed, retired very peaceably. Poor Mrs. 
Slater was soon after the races taken very ill, and 
confined to her bed and room some days. We feared, 
as no doubt it was, her over-attention to her friends, 
having the house so very full of company ; but we had 
soon the pleasure to see her perfectly recovered, when 
she was, as she was ever, attentive to our entertain- 
ment. She took us to see a house of the Duke 
of Devonshire's, called Hardwick, nine miles from 
Chesterfield. The situation is fine. It was built in 
1578 by Elizabeth, Countess of Shrewsbury. Of 
course it is antique, and rendered extremely curious to 
the present age, as all the furniture is coeval with the 
edifice. Our ancestors' taste for substantialness in 
every piece makes us now smile ; they too would, 
could they see our delicateness in the same articles, 
smile at us, and Tm certain, if any one was to compare 
three or four hundred years hence a chair from the 
drawing-room of Queen Elizabeth's days and of the 
light French' ones of George II., it would never be 
possible to suppose them to belong to the same race 
of people, as the one is altogether gigantic, and the 

* This Act, passed by the Commons, was eventually thrown out by 
the Lords. 


other quite liliputian. This house was rendered famous, 1757 
too, as Mary, Queen of Scots, was most of the seven- 
teen years she was a prisoner to the Earl of Shrews- 
bury confined here ; her rooms of state and chamber 
are shewn, her bed only removed, as that was seized 
for plunder in the Civil Wars. Everything else 
remains as it then was, and the apartment hung with 
the unfortunate Queen s work, representing in symbo- 
lical figures and allusive mottoes all virtues ; but after 
all far more celebrated for beauty than goodness ; but 
how much so ever her conduct deserves censure, she 
certainly deserved not the fate she met from the hand 
she received it, which greatly sullies the memory of the 
otherwise ever to be admired Elizabeth, who one hardly 
can think had a right to deprive her so long of liberty, 
much more of life. But not to revive a subject which 
so long has lain dormant, FU bid adieu to that and a 
place which afforded us vast pleasure from the unusual 
antiquity of the whole, and from being kept so exceed- 
ingly neat as it was throughout. , . . 

The next day we went to visit a family at 
Walton Hall,^ another sweet situation, and a few 
mornings after went to see Mr. Rhodes of Barle- 
borough Hall. The approach to the latter is as fine 
an avenue of ancient elms as I ever saw, from the 
bottom of which the old mansion is very striking, 
it being built by Judge Rhodes in the reign of 
Elizabeth ; there is a church here, a curiosity from 
its being so diminutive ; 'tis hardly possible to con- 
ceive its smallness. Mr. Rhodes, by fitting it up 
with mahogany pulpit, his own seat, &c., has made 
it so elegantly neat, that 'tis as well worth seeing 
as a magnificent cathedral! 

* Since the seat of Charles Waterton, the naturalist. 


1 7 57 After having spent our time most agreeably with 
our Derbyshire, as we had before done with our York- 
shire friends, our London party set out on our return 
to the Metropolis, but in our way back was to stay 
a few days at Matlock and see Chatsworth ; the 
latter we did the morning we left Mr. Slater's, it 
being about ten miles distant. This celebrated seat 
in the Peak of Derbyshire of his Grace of Devon- 
shire I must own does not quite answer what report 
had taught me to expect, tho' undoubtedly striking; 
but I was told it would appear less so to us than 
to strangers in general by the Slaters having a key 
to go through his Grace's grounds, a better and much 
shorter road than the public one, but that did not give 
one near so picturesque a view of Chatsworth's situa- 
tion as if we had gone down to it all at once from 
the barren moors. The house is of stone, and the 
architecture thought very fine, twenty-two rooms on 
a floor ; the windows of the principal storey, seventeen 
feet in height, are all looking-glass, of panes two 
feet wide, the frames double gilt ; the door, and 
window-frames, and staircases of marble ; ceilings 
and some apartments painted by Verrio and other 
celebrated artists ; there is some fine tapestry, and 
in one chamber a most elegant bed, and furniture 
of fine old print set upon Nankeen, which has a 
very pretty effect, as the colour of the ground sets 
off the work. There are many fine pictures ; one 
range of rooms they still style Mary, Queen of 
Scots, as she was some time here, as well as at his 
Grace's other seat of Hardwick ; there is a very 
elegant chapel, the altar and font fine marble, seats 
and gallery cedar, the walls and ceiling painted. 
The front towards the garden is esteemed a most 


regular piece of architecture. The frieze under the 1757 
cornice has the family motto upon it, in gilt letters 
so large as to take up the whole length, tho' only 
two words, "Cavendo Tutos," which are as appli- 
cable to the situation of the house as the name of 
the family. The waterworks, which are reckoned 
the finest in England, were all played off, may be 
said to be more grand than pleasing, as there is a 
formality in them, particularly the grand cascade, 
which takes off every idea of the rural scene they 
are supposed to afford one, and a kind of triflingness 
(if I may make a word), in the copper^ willow-tree, 
and other contrivances beneath the dignity of the 
place. The gardens are fine. The very disadvan- 
tages of the situation contriving to their beauty. 
On the east side, not far distant, rises a prodigious 
mountain, so thick planted with beautiful trees that 
you only see a wood gradually ascending, as if the 
trees crowded one above the other to admire the 
stately pile before them. 'Tis said that Marshal Tallard 
when he returned to his own country, when he 
reckoned up the days of his captivity, said he should 
always leave out those he spent at Chatsworth ; and 
I must own this magnificent (tho' at the same time 
gloomy), place may justly be stiled one of the won- 
ders of the Peake. . . . In speaking of the waterworks, 
I forgot to mention the length of the great cascade, 
220 yards long with twenty-three falls. In prose- 
cuting our journey of about eleven miles, 'tis hardly 
possible to describe the variety of beauties ; some- 
times we were like Don Quixote, almost imagining 
ourselves enchanted, at another terrified by the huge 

^ On pulling a string this sham tree deluges the stranger with a 


1757 rocks, which by their stupendous height seemed to 
threaten every minute to crush us by their fall. In 
the greatest of our terrors (when in a very narrow 
road, the above-mention*d rocks on one side, and 
an immense precipice down to the river on the 
other), we could not help laughing at the calm 
answer of one of the postillions, who by often 
going, I suppose, had not an idea of the danger 
we apprehended, for only calling out to beg he'd 
let us walk, and saying, ** Where, friend, are you 
going?'* **Only to Matlock Baths, ladies." So indeed 
we knew, but at that moment doubted the wisdom 
of our driver, who, however conveyed us very safe 
to the destined spot. Ceremony seems banished from 
this agreeable place, as on entering the long room 
strangers as well as acquaintances most politely made 
inquiries about the terrors of the way, &c., which 
themselves had before experienced. The very early 
hour of rising at Matlock, gave us the next morning a 
still finer idea of the uncommon beauties of the place, 
as a most glorious day gave it additional lustre. The 
time of bathing is between six and seven, the water 
warm, and the pleasantest to drink that can be ; at 
eight the company meet in the long room to breakfast 
in parties. This room and baths were built in 1734 by 
Stephen Egglinton. 'Tis a very good one, fifty feet 
long, windows all the way on each side, commanded 
the most romantic views, one way a fine terrace, 
beyond that a lawn extended to the river Derwent, 
which latter is a continual pleasing murmur by the 
current forcing itself over large pieces of rock ; over 
this rises a most picturesque and natural shrubbery, 
to an immense and perpendicular height on the crag 
of rocks. On the left is seen Matlock High Torr, a 


rocky mountain which, from the surface of the water 1757 
to the top, is 445 feet. As there is always a cool spot 
among the woods, walking seems the particular amuse- 
ment of the place. At two the bell rings for dinner, 
and, as before said, ease without unnecessary cere- 
mony reigns here. Every one sits down without any 
form, those who come first by the rule taking the 
uppermost seats at the long table. There is a gallery 
for a band of music, who play the whole time of meals, 
The fatigue of dress, too, is at this public place quite 
avoided, as hats are general, as the company walk 
again till evening, when there is a ball in the long 
room till supper, and sometimes after. Every one 
retires very early, as few card-tables are seen, gaming 
not having yet reached this rural spot. The Boat- 
house, as 'tis caird, we went one afternoon to drink 
tea at, where we bought curiosities of spars, &c., of 
the miners, men employed to the number of above ten 
thousand about Matlock only. We went, too, one 
morning to see them melt lead at a village near, call'd 
Cumford, but the heat was so intense we did not stay 
long among them ; and the poor souls told us was 
often very prejudicial to them. That evening we 
went in a barge on the river, but it being not navi- 
gable, 'tis but in few places the stones and craginess 
of the rocks will allow of boats. Every evening 
almost we found new company on our return to 
supper. Tho' the numbers perhaps were lessn'd, as 
most likely as many were gone off the same morning, 
about a hundred generally assembled at dinner. I 
heard Miss Slater, who sometimes makes a stay there, 
say that two or three days has made a total change 
of inhabitants. We tried one evening to ascend the 
prodigious rock I before spoke of, caird Matlock 


1 757 High Torn Many do, it seems, perform it, but I own 
I was frighted before I had got a quarter of the way up, 
and each object below began to appear so diminutive 
that I, even with some others, consented to be ridi- 
culed for my fears, and with vast joy got down again 
as soon as possible, and even thought I felt giddy for 
hours after, and thought myself most happy when I got 
into the grove, one of the sweetest walks in Matlock. 

And now I think 'tis time for me to quit this 
sweet place, on which fame indeed has always been 
so lavish of encomiums that one almost fears com- 
mending what one must injure by one's praise. We 
spent five most agreeable days there. Mr. Slater 
and his sister, accompanied us as far as Derby, 
where we lay that night ; a town of great anti- 
quity, very large, neat, and populous, and now of 
great note from its silk-mills, which are indeed most 
exceedingly curious, but it seems they don't let 
strangers view them with great attention, nor show 
the whole works, as the first person that set up these 
mills at Derby, they say, brought the whole from 
Italy by memory, having got a sight of these three 
times, once in the habit of a gentleman, the second 
in that of a Jesuit, and the third as a common soldier. 
Supposing this true, he must have been a man of 
most extraordinary genius, the machine consisting of 
99,947 wheels, and all these turned by one. 

The next morning our London party left Mr. and 
Miss Slater to return home, desiring our joint thanks 
to all the branches of the family for all the civilities we 
had received among them, in both the agreeable visits 
we had paid in Yorks and Derbyshire. We slept at 
Loughborough, and lay at Leicester, a very ancient- 
looking town indeed, so much so 'tis said by some to 


have been a city. The next day we breakfasted at 1757 
Market Harborough and dined at Northampton, one 
of the prettiest towns I ever saw. It happened to 
be the race-time, and a vast concourse of company 
might add to the liveliness of the place. The next 
place of note was Newport Pagnel, the most noted 
place, it seems, in this kingdom for making lace. 
Next came to Woburn, then Dunstable, the place 
Rapin mentions, where the sentence of divorce was 
pass'd against Queen Catherine, wife of Henry VI 1 1., 
by Archbishop Cranmer. We that night (the last of 
our tour), lay at St. Albans. The next day we break- 
fasted at Barnet, and got to London about two, 
where, being once more arrived, I've brought to a 
conclusion my too tedious narrative of our ten weeks' 
excursion. An able pen would have given a more 
pleasing description of the many fine places we were 
at, but as 'tis the sentiments of an admired author, 
** That 'tis false modesty to make apologies for doing 
indifferently, that, in which one is not supposed to 
excel," I shall only add, that innumerable civilities, 
delightful countries, weather the most pleasing, all 
combin'd to render our journey agreeable. 

N.B. — We set out on the 8th July and return'd 
the 9th September. Travel'd 665 miles. 

The next event Miss Girle chronicles in her diary 1758 
is in 1758. ** Great rejoicings and illuminations on 
the taking of Louisbourg, and the i6th of September 
everybody went to see the Cherbourg cannon carried 
thro' the city of London." 

She also chronicles the admiration of the public 1759 
for Roubiliac's two monuments in Westminster Abbey 
to General Hargraves and Sir Peter Warren. She 


1 759 visits in 1759, from her relation Mr. Mount's place 
at Epsom, Lord Baltimore's seat, a Mr. Belchier's 
also, which she describes as very curious. 

** Literally contained within the circumference of 
a chalk-pit. Its owner had a very fine seat called 
Durdens, in Surrey, burnt to the ground, but, instead 
of rebuilding that, has collected not only the neces- 
saries, but even the luxuries of life into the above 
small compass, a good house, one room 30 feet by 
20, and 15 feet high. In his gardens (all within the 
pit), is hothouse, greenhouse, orangery, vineyard, 
pinery, a grove, terrace, fish-ponds, fountain, with 
rock-work and the largest gold and silver fish I ever 
saw, a hot and cold bath, a pretty shrubbery ; in short, 
one cannot name anything that is not in this wonder- 
ful chalk-pit." This same year, 1759, Miss Girle, on 
the 13th of August, set out with her family, **a lady 
of our intimate acquaintance," and a cousin, on a fresh 
tour to Oxford, &c. 

After setting out early from London, they stayed 
some three hours at Salt Hill, then proceeded to 
Reading, reaching the town about six o'clock. She 
says : This town, in my opinion, may be sty I'd a 
pretty town, but residing three years near may perhaps 
have made me partial. 'Tis finely situated on the 
rivers Thames and Kennet. There are several good 
streets, and the market-place is neat and spacious. 
They have three extremely good churches. The 
adjoining Fourbourg,^ which commands one of the 
most delightful views I ever saw, contains the vene- 
rable ruins of an ancient abbey, found'd by Henry L, 
who was there buried, but his bones (as Rapin says), 
were thrown out to make a stable, and the monastery 

^ Now called the Forbury. 


is now a dwelling-house. We staid at Reading all 17 59 
Tuesday, having the pleasure of seeing there many 
of our friends. We quit'd it early on Wednesday, 
travelling that morn thro' part of Oxfordshire. Our 
road for some hours was chiefly through the most 
pleasing woods. For beautiful variety, a place called 
Berring's HilP exceeded all we that day saw. After 
having breakfasted and spent some time at a town 
named Benson,^ we went on to Oxford, that Uni- 
versity so famous thro out the world. We enter d it 
not till near the approach of evening, but found its 
appearance striking and noble to the stranger's eye. 
On account of its grand and numerous buildings, the 
High Street, which for length and breadth, it seems, is 
hardly to be paralleled, is render d particularly magni- 
ficent by the fronts of four colleges and the churches 
of St. Mary, and All Saints. The city itself is of great 
antiquity, it having been consecrated to the Sciences 
by the ancient Britons ; and tho' it has suffer d cala- 
mities, 'tis now arriv'd at a very high state of grandeur, 
adorn'd with twenty colleges, five halls, fourteen parish 
churches. Coming into it pretty late, as I before 
observ'd, we had time that night only to see one of 
its colleges, and having fixed on that of Christchurch, 
proceeded to the view, on which Dr. Hunt (Professor 
there of Arabic), was so obliging to attend us. This 
fine Gothic structure extends 382 feet. Originally 
'twas founded by Cardinal Wolsey, but on his disgrace 
Henry VIII. seiz'd on the foundation, and that he 
might not be thought to derive his fame from others, 
called it Christchurch. Over the entrance is a very 

^ Berin's Hill, supposed to be derived from Berinus, first Bishop of 
Dorchester, Oxon, hard by. 

^ Bensington, pronounced Benson, site of an ancient British city. 


1 7 59 beautiful tower, and in it hangs the great bell called 
" Tom." On the sound of its hundred and one strokes 
(the number of students in this College) at nine every 
night, all the gates are to be shut, and every gentle- 
man in the University must repair to their respec- 
tive societies. The bell^ is 5 feet 9 inches high and 7 
feet in diameter. The great quadrangle has a hand- 
some terrace round it, and in its centre is a fountain 
with a statue of Mercury,^ and in arches over three of 
the entrances are those of Queen Anne, Archbishop 
Fell, and Cardinal Wolsey. Under the latter we enter 
the stately stone staircase,^ whose beautiful roof, tho' 
very extensive, is supported by only one curious pillar. 
On our entering the hall, the Doctor told us it was 
reckoned one of the largest in the kingdom, tho' its 
dimensions are no more than 1 20 feet by 40 feet, and 
in height 80. The ceiling is a grand frame of timber- 
work finely carv'd, and adorn 'd with arms properly 
blazoned. The Gothic fretwork roof of a large window 
at the upper end of the room demands particular 
observation from its elegant lightness. The hall on 
each side is decorated with the portraits of bishops and 
others educated at Christchurch ; but what, in my 
opinion, greatly enhances the beauties of this ancient 
hall is, that at this day *tis just the same (except the 
forty-five pictures above mentioned) as in the time 
of its founder, the Cardinal, in 1525. without the least 
addition of more modern ornaments, except such as 
cleanliness ever demands. The chapel of this College 
is the cathedral of the Bishop of Oxford, remarkable 
for some remains of painted glass of a most brilliant 

1 *' Great Tom " weighs 1 7,000 lbs., the clapper, 342. It came from 
the Abbey of Oseney. 

^ The statue now removed. 
* Built in 164a 


colour, and the fine stone roof of its choir. Having 1759 
seen thus far and the evening advancing, we returned 
for the night to our lodgings ; but Thursday's morn 
had not many hours been visible before our sex's 
characteristic, as 'tis call'd, curiosity^ made us, I must 
own, rather impatient to be traversing over the 
charming buildings of this fine city; and our break- 
fast repast was no sooner over than we got into our 
vehicle, which for hours incessantly whirl'd us o'er 
the rattling pavement, stopping tho' at the most 
remarkable edifices for us to view the grandeur of 
in, as well as outside. The first College we were set . 
down at was that of Trinity, which we went to see 
on account of the peculiar elegance of its chapel, 
which was built a.d. 1693.^ The screen, rails, and 
altar-piece is cedar inlaid (the fine scent of which on 
entering is very agreeable), besides other embellish- 
ments. There are many festoons of carving so finely 
executed that 'tis unnecessary to inform any that has 
seen his performances that they were done by Grinde- 
line Gibbons.^ The chapel is pav'd with marble, 
and under an alcove near the altar is an elegant 
Gothic tomb, with the effigies of Sir Thomas Pope^ 
(the founder), and his lady in alabaster. The roof 
is enrich'd with painting and fretwork. From the 
chapel we went into the gardens, which are prettily 
laid out, and remarkable for the fine yew wall that 
surrounds them. From Trinity College we went to 
the Museum, a building sixty feet in length, with a 
grand portico of the Corinthian order. At entering 
this apartment, a smile, I fancy, takes place on the 
features of the most grave philosopher from the odd 

* Rebuilt. 2 Grinling Gibbons. 

^ The College was founded by Sir Thomas Pope in 1554. 


1759 contrasted view that lies before them. There may, 
and no doubt there are, many curiosities in this collec- 
tion ; but I must own some I should have thought 
too minute to be preserved by gentlemen of such a 
University ; but ignorance ought always to be silent, 
and therefore Til criticise no more! A present of 
Lady Pembroke's deserves mentioning, which is a 
magnet, the finest now in England, attracting a 
200 lb. weight. Then there is an ivory carved ball, 
enclosing three of the same sort, one within the other, 
all cut out of one piece, which I think is extremely 
. curious, as is a band of paper pricked by a young lady 
in imitation of lace ; and many other things which 
would give entertainment could one be certain they 
really were what they now have, I fancy, only the 
name of; as, for instance, we were presented with a 
view of the skull of Oliver Cromwell, when at the 
same time history informs us his body was never 
found ; but his head indeed, for all I can tell, may have 
travelled to Oxford solo, and there lies among other 
curiosities, as the shield of Achilles, &c., &c. 

From the Museum we next visit'd the Bodleian 
Library (which is over the divinity school, where Miss 
Blandy ^ was tried), this library consisting of three 
lofty rooms, disposed in the form of the Roman H ; 
on all sides are the books arrang d, each volume being 
chained to the cases. In the picture gallery con- 
tiguous to it are many valuable portraits. Two I 
must mention, that of Dr. Walls, by Sir Godfrey 
Kneller, which is reckoned the masterpiece of that 
fine lymner, and one of Johannes Duns Scotus, who 

* Miss Blandy, a native of Henley-on-Thames, was tried at Oxford 
in 1752 for poisoning her father by administering powders given to her 
by her lover. She protested her innocence, but was hanged at Oxford 
the same year. 


made a resolution to fast till he had finished a book 1759 
he was translating, and died writing the last page, is 
a figure most striking. In this gallery, on a pedestal 
of black marble, stands the brass effigy of the Earl 
of Pembroke in complete armour, who was chancellor 
of the University in the reign of James I. Twas 
designed by Peter Paul Rubens, and supposed to be 
the finest statue in England. 

We next went to New College, found'd by 
William of Wickham.^ The first court is 168 feet 
long ; in the centre is the statue of Minerva. At 
the north-west corner we enter'd a chapel, which 
by far (as we were told), exceeds all in Oxford, and 
'tis indeed a fabric most magnificent. The ante- 
chapel is supported by four pillars of fine pro- 
portion, and thro* a curious Gothic screen you come 
into a choir grandly striking, rendered more so by the 
noble flight of marble steps, and their iron rail-work 
surrounding the altar, the ornaments, paintings, and 
crimson velvet embroidered communion cloth all add- 
ing lustre to each other. The organ is fine, erect'd 
by the famous Dolham, and the stalls esteemed the 
finest Gothic finishing for its lightness anywhere to 
be met with. The gardens of the College are large, 
and from a very high mount the Gothic spires, &c., 
of the building has a fine effect, and the area before 
this eminence is reckoned a curious specimen of the 
old parterre taste; 'tis divided in quarters. In one 
(cut out in box), are the arms of England, garter, 
and motto ; in another, those of the founder, with 
this, " * Manners make the man,' says William of 
Wickham 1379" — and things after the same manner 
in the two others. There is a fine bowling-green, 

1 In 1380. 


1759 shady 'd on one side by tall sycamores, whose branches 
are so enwoven from end to end as render them 
justly admired as a natural curiosity. From New 
College we went to the Clarendon Printing House, a 
magnificent structure with a Doric portico. This 
edifice was erected a.d. 1711^ by the profit arising 
from the sale of Lord Clarendons History, as the 
copy had been presented by his son to the University. 
The letters are all solid metal, and the manner of 
placing, sorting, and taking the impression all gives 
entertainment, making one at the same time thank- 
fully happy that an art so charming has a being in 
our country ; for what pleasure so delightful as that 
of reading? We next went to the Theatre, erected 
at the expense of Archbishop Sheldon,* cost ;^i 5,000 ; 
the front is adorn'd by Corinthian pillars, with the 
statue of him and the Duke of Ormond. On entering, 
the mind is struck with an idea of grandeur. The 
roof is flat, and not being supported by columns or 
arch-work, rests on the side walls, which are seventy 
and eighty feet distant ; this roof is covered with 
allegorical painting. The room is, besides, furnished 
with full-length portraits ; 'tis in form a Roman D, 
and contains 3000 people. From the Theatre we 
went to the Schools to take a survey of the statues. 
Lady Pomfret s present to the University, and which 
are styled an inestimable collection.^ IVe no doubt 
by connoisseurs in ancient antiquities they may be 
thought so — their number is 135 — but I must own to 
have a taste so refin'd as to have no pleasure in the 
sight of so many dirty, frightful, maimed figures, 
some having unfortunately lost heads, others legs, 

* I5y Sir John Vanbrugh. - In 1669. 

^ This is .in amusing account of the Arundel marbles ! 


arms, hands, or eyes. Being at a little distance 17 59 
from a Grecian Venus, the beauty of her face greatly 
struck me, but how was I forc'd to call my own 
judgment in question when on a nearer view I found 
it a new head, stuck by a late statuary on the dirty 
shoulders of a lady who seem'd to have no other 
merit but her having been form'd so many years ago. 
Strange repositories these, and the only places, I fancy, 
where beautiful features are pass'd by unregard'd, and 
the men stand in admiration at the majestic air of 
ladies far past their grand climactericks. 

From the schools we went to the Radcliffian 
Library, which is a circular building situated in a square. 
It stands on arcades in which lay several pieces of the 
ruins brought from Palmyra. Ascending a flight of 
spiral steps, you come into the library itself, which is 
said to be a pattern of elegance ; it rises into a capa- 
cious dome ornamented with compartments of stucco. 
The pavement is of a two-coloured stone brought 
from Germany. The room is enclosed by a cir- 
cular series of arches, beautified with festoons and 
pilasters, behind these, in two galleries above and 
below, are the books in elegant cases, facing each 
other; over the door a statue of Dr. Radcliffe by 
Rysbrack, and indeed the whole room is finished in 
so high a taste as exceeds description. After seeing 
it we went to the College of All Souls, and saw first 
the chapel, which we could not help thinking in- 
significant after that of New College or Trinity, tho' 
at any other city but that of Oxford might be styl'd 
grand. We then went to their library, a room that 
from its ornaments and size must be call'd a fine 
one ; 'tis 200 feet in length and 40 in height About 
the middle of the north side is a recess equal to the 


1 7 59 breadth of the room, in this is the statue of Colonel 
Codrington.^ There are two arrangements of books, 
the upper one being in a superb gallery, over which 
IS a series of bronzes consisting of vases and busts 
interchangeably disposed. The ceiling and other spaces 
are adorn'd with the richest of stucco. The lock and 
key to this apartment, tho' seemingly too minute an 
object, deserves mentioning, it having cost sixteen 
guineas, and really may be styl'd a curiosity. Their 
hall at this College is an elegant modern room. The 
next place our vehicle set us down at was the Physick 
Garden,^ which is five acres, surrounded by a wall 
with fustic portals at proper distances ; on each side 
the grand entrance is a greenhouse, besides there's 
a fine hothouse, containing and raising for the garden 
many thousand plants for the improvement of bota- 
nical studies and vegetable philosophy. There are 
many very curious ones, the sight of which gave me 
a very high entertainment, as particularly the coffee 
shrub, the caper tree, the plantain, cotton, cinnamon, 
creeping cerus, with many others too numerous to 
mention. We saw the trunk of an aloe that blew 
there some years ago. From this garden we went 
to Magdalene Walks, as the gardens of that college 
are called, indeed they are charmingly pretty, having 
a lawn, grove, and paddock stock'd with forty head 
of deer, besides a most agreeable walk shaded by 
lofty trees, and its banks washfed by the river Cher- 
well. At the hall of this College we saw the gentle- 
men at dinner, which was the last sight I think that 
we traversed after in this city of curiosities, and having 
seen, tho' not all, yet those buildings that were deem'd 

* The library was built with money left by him for that purpose. 

* Established in 1622. An earlier one founded by Linacre. 


most deserving observation, we quitted a place which 17 59 
I think every native of England once in their lives at 
least ought to visit. 

We lay at Woodstock the evening we left 
Oxford, and the next morning went to the Palace 
(or Castle), of Blenheim, the seat of his Grace the 
Duke of Marlborough, the royal gift of Queen 
Anne, who built and gave it to the family in com- 
memoration of the battle of Blenheim in France. It 
cost near ;^300,ooo. On entering the park thro' a 
portal of Corinthian order, the magnificent pile strikes 
the eye, and gives one the idea of grandeur from a 
view so superb. Then the Rialto bridge, the lake, 
its valley, and other beautiful scenes are not less 
delightful. Here you are about half a mile distant 
from the house, and have only an oblique prospect of it, 
but on a nearer approach you find the front a semi- 
circle, its centre a portico elevated on massy columns ; 
over the door is the figure of Pallas. This entrance 
admits you to a hall which is fifteen feet in height, 
supported by Corinthian pillars, on the recesses of 
which are casts from antique statues ; over them paint- 
ings. The ceiling represents the Duke crown'd by 
Victory. In the arcades on the right and left is a fine 
arrangement of marble termini. The hangings of 
the first apartment are the achievements of Alexander. 
In this room are two crayon pieces finely executed 
by Lady Bolingbroke (sister of the present Duke ^) ; 
in the third apartment is that charming picture of 
Rubens' family by himself; here, too, is that principal 
one of Vandyke's, Lord Stafford dictating to his secre- 
tary ; in the fourth apartment the hangings conclude 
Alexander's battles ; the fifth is a cabinet of pictures by 

* George, third Duke. 


1759 the most eminent masters; the tapestry of the sixth, 
seventh, ninth, and tenth are the battles of the great 
Duke of Marlborough, and nothing can be a more strik- 
ing ornament to the rooms they adorn than these fine 
hangings ; the eighth apartment is graced by the most 
pleasing specimens of Rubens' luxuriant pencil, and 
the eleventh by other masters. The saloon is answer- 
able in magnificence to the rest ; its dado is lin'd with 
marble, the doorcase is the same (and so are all in 
the other rooms, each a different sort) ; the walls are 
adorn'd with paintings by La Guerre ; 'tis in com- 
partments, each of which contains people of a diffe- 
rent nation in their proper habits, as the English, 
French, Italian, Spaniards, Turks, Chinese, Dutch, 
and Moors ; they are finely executed and have a 
charming effect, each portrait seeming in admiration 
of the noble room. From a series of smaller tho' mag- 
nificent apartments one is suddenly struck at entering 
the library, which is indeed superb ; its dimensions 
add greatly to its grandeur, it being i8o feet long 
and proportionately broad and lofty ; the Doric pila- 
sters of marble, the complete columns of the same, 
supporting the rich entablature, the window frames, 
and surrounding basement of black marble, and the 
stucco'd compartments of the vaulted ceiling are all 
in the highest taste. This room contains the best 
private collection of books, as we were informed, 
in England, amounting to 24,000 volumes, which 
cost ;^30,ooo ; they are under gilt - wire lattices ; 
on the top of the cases is a series of bronzes, 
and over them paintings from Italy, Germany 
and Flanders, with the cartoons copied by Le 
Blaud from those of Hampton Court ; the furni- 
ture of the library is answerable to itself, part of 


which is a very fine orrery and planetarium, two 1759 
curious tables of agate inlaid, on each a pair of 
urns of oriental alabaster ; at the upper end of the 
room is a statue, very highly finished, by Rysbrack 
of Queen Anne. Leaving the library, we had then 
gone thro' the body of the house, which consists of 
fifteen principal rooms. One of the state bed-cham- 
bers is point furniture on a buff-coloured holland, 
the hangings, bed, window curtains, and chairs all 
the same, and nothing can be more neatly elegant 
than this apartment. In one of the wings is the 
chapel, where there is a grand monument to the 
old Duke and Duchess by Rysbrack, and their two 
sons, who died young ; underneath, basso-relievo, is 
the taking of Marshal Tallard. The park and gar- 
dens are extremely fine, the former near eleven miles 
circumference, containing innumerable scenes of rural 
variety. This park has been many years famous, it 
being that where Henry II. erected the house and 
labyrinth for his mistress,^ the romantic retreat that 
was styl'd Fair Rosamond's Bower. 'Twas situated 
in the sweet valley I mentioned at our entering the 
park. The celebrated poet Chaucer^ was born and 
liv'd in a house very near the Corinthian portal, 
the ruinous remains of which are still visible. The 
gardens of Blenheim are laid out with taste, embel- 
lished by natural beauties. The south front of the 
palace is towards them ; on the pediment in its centre 
is a bust of Louis XIV. larger than life, taken from 
the citadel of Tournay. About two miles before we 
got to Mortenhenmarsh (the place where we that 

* In vain did Vanbnigh plead with Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, 
to retain this. She pulled it down in 1 709, leaving only an old wall. 

- Chaucer lived at Woodstock, and much of the scenery of "The 
Dream " is taken from there. 


1759 day din'd) is a pillar erect'd, calFd the four Shire 
Stone, as there the counties of Worcester, Gloucester, 
Warwick, and Oxford meet, a circumstance not a 
little extraordinary, that at the same time one may 
be in all four! In the evening we went down Broad- 
way Hill, the summit of which commands a prospect 
terribly delightful by reason of the surrounding vales. 
We lay that night at Broadway, and the following 
morning went thro' the Vale of Evesham, a place 
I've often heard prais'd for beauty, and which indeed 
is extremely pleasant. By dinner-time we got to 
Worcester, a city of great note, built by the Romans ; 
it contains twelve churches and a cathedral, has a 
very grand Town- Hall, and is really a neat place. 
The next morning papa and myself went in a chaise 
to Lulsley,^ a situation I think so sweetly romantic ; 
none I ever saw except Matlock in the Peak of 
Derbyshire exceeds it. From thence we had a fine 
view of Malvern Hills, which are rather mountains, 
they rising one above the other for seven miles. We 
return'd to Worcester to dine, and about two hours 
after set out to Tewkesbury, the neatest and best 
pav'd town we had yet been at. About a quarter of 
a mile from this place was fought the famous battle 
between the Houses of York and Lancaster, on the 
4th of May 1470, to this day styl'd the Bloody 
Meadow. Edward IV. totally overthrew Henry VI. 
of the latter House, taking him and his son prisoners, 
the latter of whom was murder'd by order of the 
Duke of Gloucester. The great old abbey at Tewkes- 
bury may be call'd one of the largest churches in 
England that is not cathedral, it having two spacious 

^ Miss Girle inherited a portion of this estate of Lulsley from her 
mother's family. 


aisles, a stately tower and large chancel ; the com- 1759 
munion table is one entire piece of marble fourteen 
feet long, its cloth a present from the Dowager Lady 
Coventry, her own work. This church was first built 
in the year 711,^ but William the Conqueror added 
to it greatly ; it contains many curious monuments 
of antiquity, some few of which I shall mention. 
An abbot lies here in a stone coffin, which about 
fifty years since was opened by some persons (as 
was thought, only for his crozier and ring). The body 
was there entire, and the diaper he was wrapt in 
perfectly fresh, an incident that seems surprising. 
George, Duke of Clarence, who was order'd by his 
brother Richard to be smothered in a butt of 
Malmsley, is buried in this abbey, and the great 
Earl of Warwick in Edward IV.'s time, who was 
styl'd the king-making Earl. The tomb of a Lord 
O'Brien deserves attention for the curious Gothic 
workmanship wherewith 'tis adorn'd, as does still 
more the magnificent little chapel dedicated to Aftry 
Magdalene, where private mass used to be said. 
Two other monuments I remember is Edward (son 
of Henry VI.), who I before mentioned was murder d 
at the battle of Tewkesbury, the other was that of 
a monk,^ who in time of rebellion had run into a 
hollow tree, and endeavouring after the battle was 
over to get out, found it impossible to extricate him- 
self, and was starved to death ; but why so very a 
coward should have been honour'd by a fine monu- 
ment seems extraordinary, as every one must think 
a mind so selfishly mean almost deserv'd the punish- 

* A.D. 715, founded by Odo and Dodo, Dukes of Mercia. 

2 This must have been a verger's fiction at that period ; the monu- 
ment is to Abbot Wakeman, erected for himself as a memento mori, 
when Abbot ; he was afterwards Bishop of Gloucester. 


1759 ment it met with. It tCMDk up some time to view 
the old abbey with the attention it deserv'd, but the 
agreeable survey over, we got into the coach and 
proceeded to Cheltenham. This place has been for 
many years frequented on account of its Spaw waters ; 
there was then the season, but little company. We 
breakfasted with some friends who were there, after 
which, having seen the place and everything deserving 
notice, we set out for Gloucester, got there by dinner- 
time. Gloucester is the capital city of the county, 
and lays stretched, as it were, along the river Severn. 
There is nothing except the Cathedral ^ I think worth 
seeing ; that on the outside is a fine Gothic structure, 
with a tower remarkably light and pretty ; the inside 
of the church most excessively heavy, being sup- 
ported by plain pillars of a size most enormous. The 
most particular monuments are these : Robert, Duke 
of Normandy, eldest son of William the Conqueror ; 
Edward II. ; then there's a tomb of one Parker, who 
was the last Abbot and first Bishop, and another of 
a man and his wife with their nine sons and seven 
daughters. I must not forget to mention the clois- 
ters of this cathedral, which are reckoned remarkably 

We left Gloucester about four, and being pretty 
late in the evening, we could proceed no farther 
than a place call'd "Cambridge Inn," where indeed 
necessity obliged us to put up with lodgings sufficiently 
inconvenient ; but as it was for a few hours only, we 
made ourselves as easy as 'twas possible in a situation 
disastrous enough, rejoicing only at the approach of 
the next morn, which no sooner arriv'd than we 
quitted with pleasure "Cambridge Inn." 

^ Founded in A.D. 679 by Wolfhere, first Christian king of Mercia. 


We breakfasted at Amesbury Hill, where is one of 17 59 
the sweetest prospects imagination can conceive, com- 
manding an extensive view quite to the Severn Sea, 
which adds no little beauty to the whole. After stay- 
ing some hours at this charming spot, we went on to 
Bristol, reaching that place about six in the evening. 
This city is seat'd between the rivers Avon and 
Frome, contains nineteen churches and a cathedral. 
The streets are but narrow. The new Exchange is a 
handsome building, and the quay for its length, and the 
crane, is not, we were informed, anywhere in Europe 
to be equaird. Queen Square, and College Green, are 
the two prettiest places in Bristol. In the former is a 
statue to William III. by Rysbrack, and in the latter 
a curious cross, supposed the most ancient and well- 
preserv'd now in England. The Cathedral is not 
very extraordinary, and upon the whole, the city 
itself, I fancy, would not be greatly injured by having 
the same character ; not that 'tis near so bad a place 
as report has taught me to expect. They there draw 
all their goods on sledges, which they say is a great 
inconvenience, tho' I thought it seem'd much less so 
than the way they convey them from place to place 
in the Metropolis. The next morning we went to the 
Hot Well on St. Vincent's Rock, which indeed is a 
sweet romantic place. This was the fullest season 
has been known for years. The company meet here 
to drink the waters at eight and twelve, then walk in 
the rooms, which is a little way distant from the well. 
After dinner meet there for the evening, and on 
Tuesdays and Fridays there are balls. This is a 
short description of the employment of the Bristol 
season, which was then at its height, and a prodigious 
deal of company there then indeed seem'd assembl'd. 



1759 Mr. Ford's family were so obliging to give us their 
company to dinner, and in the evening we once more 
prosecuted our tour, and got to Bath that night. 
This is a place of great antiquity, lying in a valley, 
surrounded with amphitheatrical views of hills, from 
which hills spring the water so fam'd, and which are 
of such advantage to this city — a city, in my opinion, 
more worth seeing than any I was ever at, the great 
Metropolis excepted. Twice I have been there before, 
but 'tis infinitely improved by the building the circus, 
and the whole street by which 'tis approach 'd from the 
square. They seem to fear the former's ever being 
finished, its progress is so extremely slow ; nine houses 
only are yet erect'd. There is intended to be three 
times that number, and the openings between give a 
fine view of the country. Those that are complet'd 
give one an idea of the elegance of the whole, they 
being in a magnificent taste in the Doric, Ionic, and 
Corinthian orders. ... 

We employed our morning as is usual at Bath in 
going to the Pump, the Abbey Church, and the rooms, 
tho' each were but little frequented, there being but 
two or three families besides that of the Duchess of 
Marlborough. The heat of the waters is very extra- 
ordinary, and people attribute it to different causes, 
but most to its passing thro' certain sulphurous veins 
of the earth. In taste 'tis not so agreeable as those 
at Bristol. Thursday afternoon we went to Mr. 
Busby's at Walcot ; we had paid in the morning a 
visit to Mr. and Mrs. Pierce, and early on Friday we 
quitted this agreeable place, and lay that night at 
Devizes. At this town then were quarter'd our 
Berkshire Militia, which, to the honour of their officers 
and county, we really thought came much nearer to a 


resemblance to the regulars than any we had yet seen. 17 59 
After having breakfasted on Saturday, we quitted this 
town, and in a few hours had the pleasure of seeing 
that famous monument of antiquity on Salisbury Plain, 
caird Stonehenge. But as I should be able of myself 
to give but a very incoherent account of this noble 
work, eminent from the remotest ages, I shall here 
insert a very short abstract indeed, as I took it down 
in reading Dr. Stukeley's book concerning it His 
words are as follows : — ** 'Tis more than probable that 
it was a temple of the British Druids, and the chief 
cathedral (as it may be call'd), of all their temples in 
this island. 'Tis thought to be of an extraordinary 
antiquity, perhaps three thousand years old, executed 
not long after Cambyses' invasion of Egypt. When 
the Saxons and Danes came over, they wonder d at 
Stonehenge then, and were at as great a loss about 
the founders and intent as we are now. Camden saw, 
with excellent judgment, 'twas neither Norman nor 
English. Inigo Jones endeavoured to prove it the 
former ; but whoever is acquainted with Roman archi- 
tecture must be of a different opinion. After passing 
a circular ditch by which 'tis enclosed, about 30 yards 
distant is the work itself, being 108 feet in diameter. 
On entering and casting your eyes around the yawning 
ruins, you are struck with an ecstatic reverie. The 
temple was composed of two circles and two ovals, 
the whole number of stones 140 ; the great oval 
consisting of 10 uprights, the inner, with the altar, of 
20 ; the great circle of 30 ; the inner of 40, and 5 
imposts of the great oval ; 30 of the great circle ; 2 
stones standing on the bank of the area, 2 others 
lying down, and one there seems to have been by the 
barrow nearest this place. The largest stones beyond 


1759 controversy were brought from those called grey- 
wethers^ on Marlborough Downs, and a piece brought 
to the Royal Society, and examined with a micro- 
scope, 'tis found to be a composition of crystals, red, 
green, and white. The extravagant grandeur of the 
work has attracted the admiration of all ages. Indeed 
a serious view of it puts the mind into a kind of ecstasy 
at the struggle between art and nature, and 'tis truly 
entertaining to consider the judicious carelessness 
therein ; for notwithstanding the monstrous size (the 
stones of the adytum being 30 feet high), 'tis far 
from appearing heavy, and no one ever thought it 
too great or too little, too high or too low. The 
trilithon at the upper end was an extraordinary beauty, 
but the noble impost is dislodg d from its airy seat and 
fallen on the altar. The two uprights that supported it 
are above 30 feet long ; one is entire, but leans upon 
one of the stones of the inward oval, the other is 
broken in half lying on the altar." 

Such is the account Dr. Stukeley gives us of 
Stonehenge. The original indeed is a folio volume ; 
mine only a few lines taken from different parts of 
his, to serve as a help to memory should time 
obliterate the idea of these very striking ruins from 
my mind. Having spent some time in viewing this 
magnificent wonder, and endeavouring with some 
tools our servants had, to carry some pieces of it with 
us, which with great difficulty we at last accomplished, 
and have since had them polished ; but in reading the 
above, altho' we were rather mortified, as 'tis his 
sentiments that 'tis an absurd curiosity for people to 
wish the remains of this temple further ruinated, but, 

* The stones of Stonehenge are sarsen (or grey-wether), syenite, and 


however, we have the comfort to think the very small 1759 
bits we took could not greatly endanger the work, and 
that, tho' our party were chiefly female, we had not 
more curiosity than the learned gentlemen of the 
Royal Society, who, it seems, with Dr. Stukeley, had 
some brought for their inspection thro' a microscope. 
. . . We once more entered the attending vehicle, 
highly entertained by the sight of what in the same 
moment gave one sensations pleasingly awful. By 
the number of barrows on Salisbury Plain people 
(says Dr. Stukeley), injudiciously conclude there have 
been great battles fought there, and the slain buried 
in them, but they are really no other than family 

From Stonehenge we went to Wilton House. 
This seat of the Pembroke family has been theirs 
two hundred years, but originally a monastery. Part 
of it was rebuilt in the reign of Henry VIII. and part 
in that of Elizabeth. This charming tho' ancient 
mansion is situated in a garden of sixty acres, which 
a river runs thro* ; a delightful lawn lays before the 
house, which has the view of the canal ; a grand 
arcade at the upper end, where the fall of water is 
very fine. On the contrary, when you are at this 
building, the eye has still greater beauties to admire, 
as the magnificent old structure, a Palladian bridge, 
Gothic seats, temple, and numberless pieces of the 
watery element, which ever is one of the most pleasing 
objects in a fine prospect. The late Lord Pembroke 
had thought, it seems, of erecting in his gardens a 
Stonehenge in miniature, as 'twas supposed to have 
been in its first glory. . . . The late Earl was — so 
Tm told — a man of great genius and a master of 
antiquity, by which he was enabled to collect such 


1759 valuable pieces of painting and sculpture as made a 
perfect museum. The busts, statues, and relievos, 
in all 335, are deem'd very fine. There are ten state 
apartments, the chimney-pieces of which were carved 
in Italy ; the decorations of the wainscot are gilt, the 
stuccoed ceilings are answerable to the splendour of 
the rest. 'Twas at this seat Sir Philip Sidney wrote 
his " Arcadia." In the bottom panels of one of the 
rooms are several incidents of that romance in minia- 
ture, but very ill painted. The bed-hangings of one 
of the state rooms is bugles, which by candlelight 
must look, as we imagin d, extremely pretty. 'Twas 
worked by some ladies of the family. But what most 
deserves a particular observation is the celebrated 
picture of the Pembrgke family by Vandyke. This 
very large piece is at the upper end of the great room. 
It consists of ten whole lengths, besides two sons and 
a daughter, represented in the clouds, who died young. 
'Tis so fine a performance as I imagine it has few 
equals, and at 6o feet distance (the length of the 
room), one almost sees each portrait animated into 

that life the limner has so well endeavoured to express. 

• .....• 

We quitted Wilton just time enough to reach 
Salisbury before the close of day, so had not the 
opportunity that evening of seeing a place every one 
talk'd of for its peculiar neatness. The next morn- 
ing we went to the Cathedral, a fine fabrick, the spire- 
steeple very beautiful. This building, founded a.d. 
I220, is thought remarkable for having as many gates 
as months in the year, windows as days, and marble 
pillars as hours — a circumstance for which the archi- 
tect is justly found fault with if in his plan so whiin- 
sical a thought had preference to others much more 



material in a design so great. After the Cathedral 
service we returned to the inn, and, dinner over, 
quitted this celebrated town. . . . We lay that night 
at Andover, the next at Hertford Bridge, and early 
on Tuesday got to Mr. Baker s at Mattingley, which 
family obligingly insisted on our staying with them 
till the next morn. . . . Wednesday morn only too 
soon began its dawn, almost with which we quitted 
their friendly mansion and set out for Lincoln's Inn 
Fields, which place, after having dined at Staines, we 
reached in the evening of the 29th August, which day 
was the concluding one of an excursion as agreeable 
as everything seemingly contributing to our pleasure 
could render so delightful a tour. 

The number of miles we travelled : — 


From London to Reading . 


• 39 

Reading to Benson . 

• 15 

Benson to Oxford . . . . 


Oxford to Woodstock 


Woodstock to Moreton-hen-Marsh 


Moreton-hen-Marsh to Broadway 


Broadway to Worcester 


Worcester to Lulsley and back 

. 16 

Tewkesbury to Cheltenham 


Gloucester to Cambridge Inn 


Cambridge Inn to Amesbury 


Bristol to Bath . 


Bath to Devizes 

• 19 

Devizes to Wilton 


Wilton to Salisbury . 

■ 3 

Salisbury to Andover 

■ 17 

Andover to Basingstoke 

. 18 

Basingstoke to Hertford Bridge 


Hertford Bridge to Mattingley 


Mattingley to Staines 


Staines to London 

t ■ 




1759 Miss Girle paid a visit to the Tower in December 
1759, breakfasting with the Governor. Her descrip- 
tion has nothing remarkable in it, with the excep- 
tion of seeing the wild beasts then kept there. The 
next extract of interest is on May 6, 1760: — "Earl 
Ferrers was carried from the Tower to Tyburn, 
escorted by a party of Horse and Foot Guards ; a 
clergyman, and two sheriffs were in the coach with 
him. The poor unhappy man was drest in his 
wedding suit, dating, as he himself said, his whole 
unhappy conduct from a forced marriage.^ He 
observed that the apparatus, and being made a 
spectacle of to so vast a multitude was greatly worse 
than death itself; the procession was two hours and 
three-quarters from setting out, the landau and six 
in which he was, the sheriffs each in their chariots, 
one mourning coach, and a herse attended and 
returned thro' Lincolns Inn Fields about one. I 
think I never shall forget a procession so moving ; 
to know a man an hour before in perfect health, then 
a lifeless corpse,^ yet a just victim to his country, for 
the abuse of that power his rank in life had given 
him a title to — his rank, indeed, caused his punish- 
ment, as the good old King in answer to the 
numerous petitions of his greatly to be pitied family 
made this memorable speech, * That for the last years 
of his life he had been beyond his most sanguine 
hopes successful, for which he should ever return 
thanks to God, and on his part he had and always 
would endeavour to administer justice as he ought, 
as events had jshown by the punishment of his most 
exalted subjects.'" 

^ He had murdered his steward in a peculiarly brutal manner, for 
refusing to falsify some statements as to the EarPs financial position. 
^ For his rank's sake he was hung by a silken rope. 


Miss Girle concludes with thinking the unhappy 1759 
Lord's intellect was more at fault than his heart, in 
the murder for which he suffered. Her account of 
the British^ Museum, just opened, 1759, and its 
contents are amusing. 

"Montagu House ^ as a noble one is of itself 
worth seeing. The apartments are all fitted up 
with bookcases, and cabinets for Sir Hans Sloane's 
curiosities, purchas'd by the public for ;^i 0,000; 
there are 30,000 volumes of manuscripts. Six rooms 
are Sir Hans' collection of books, many valuable ones 
no doubt — four is here shown as greatly so : i. ** In 
thy own old age," one of the first books printed ; 2. 
Queen Mary's Mass-book, finely painted ; 3. The 
first Bible ever printed in English, a present to 
Henry VIII. on his permitting it to be in that 
language ; 4. A manuscript Bible, wrote by a lady 
named Theclea, very valuable for its antiquity. In 
one room, with many other drawings, were two 
volumes of insects, by Mariana,^ in their several 
states, with the plants they feed on, cost Sir Hans 
;^500. In other apartments are rang'd Egyptian 
figures, found with mummies, &c., &c. . . •. One 
room of curious things in spiHts (but disagreeable). 
Indeed Sir Hans seems justly to have gaind the 
title of a real virtuoso in the above collection. 

October 25, 1760, His Majesty George II. died 1760 
at Kensington, in the 77th year of his age, and 34th 
of his reign, taken from a people by whom he was 

* 1753 was the year Parliament purchased Sir Hans Sloane's Museum, 
which with the Harleian Library, formed the nucleus of the present 
British Museum. The Museum was opened 1759. 

" Had been the residence of the Dukes of Montagu ; built 1677. 

' Maria Sibilla Merian, one of the earliest delineators of insect life ; 
she was born 1647, died 1717. 


1760 sincerely loved, fortunately for himself, at the most 
shining period of his life. 'Twas astonishing to see 
the amazing consternation, bustle, and confusion an 
event like this, quite unexpected, made in a metropolis 
such as London. I happened to be out that morn 
before it was known : it was published about twelve, 
when instantly the streets were in a buzz, the black 
cloth carrying about, and in half an hour every shop 
was hung with the appendages of mourning, which 
was not put on till the Sunday se'nnight following. 
The bowels were brought privately from Kensington, 
and buried in Henry VI I. 's Chapel, and the night after, 
the body was brought and deposited in state for 
interment ; on the next day, Tuesday, November 
loth, the great bell of St. Paul's, and every other 
church in London, toll'd from 6 to 11, and minute- 
guns fired ; all which formed the most melancholy 
sounds 'tis possible to imagine. 

December 9, 1760. — The scene of joy as usual 
soon succeeded, and every one went to see their new 
young monarch go in state to the House of Peers, 
really a pretty sight, by the multitude of coaches 
and concourse of populace that attended. The ac- 
clamations of joy and approbation were excessive, 
tho' I imagine not more than every sovereign receives 
on the like occasion. Novelty was, and ever will be 
pleasing to people of all ranks in life, as well as the 
mere vulgar. The procession was as follows : — 

12 Grenadiers. 

A coach, six bay horses, decorated. 

A coach, dun horses. 

12 Grenadiers. 

14 Yeomen of the Guard. 

10 Footmen. 

4 other men. 


The King in the state coach, drawn by 8 cream-coloured horses, 1 760 

long tails, and manes ornamented with blue ribbons. 

A Company of Horse Guards. 

In the return, all the Members of both Houses 

of Parliament in their coaches. 

In 1760 occurs the fourth journal of travel by Miss 
Girle, entitled — 



If the rusticity of a dull pen, like a piece of rough 
marble, may be polished by exercise, then (as Tve 
scribbled o'er much paper), may I in time, perhaps, 
have the honorary title of an expert journalist. Here 
am I now commencing my fourth essay on our 
summers rambles. . . . Our party assembled and 
our morning fine, we once more bid adieu to the 
Metropolis. Our first day's place of breakfasting was 
the Orkney Arms, Maidenhead Bridge. All within a 
few miles of this place the road, I think, is disagree- 
ably unpleasant, the grounds surrounding it wearing 
that dreary flat aspect which, in my opinion, generally 
denotes those bordering on the great city ; but when 
once Windsor Castle is in view, then the whole country 
is fine, and is so quite on to Newbury. The prospect 
in particular is very delightful from the hill just after 
you leave Maidenhead, commanding Clifden, Lord 
Inchiquin's, and the houses of several other gentle- 
men. We that evening reach'd Reading, the county 
town of Berks. 'Tis large, well built, and during the 
Civil War in England was strongly fortified. The 
remains of the bastions, &c., are still seen ; formerly was 
noted for a famous abbey in the adjoining Fourbourg 


1760 (erected, as 'tis said, by a Saxon lady). Here the 
Parliament of England has been sometimes held. Its 
venerable ruins even now strike the beholder with an 
awful pleasure. 'Tis most charmingly situated ; but 
that, indeed, is no wonder, for who ever heard or read 
of a society of religieux in former days whose thoughts 
were so entirely fix'd on the other world, as to make 
them neglect erecting their earthly residence on the 
most delightful spot. Indeed, this Fourbourg must 
have been ever beautiful, and since the above men- 
tioned time rendered more so by having in view the 
seat of Lord Cadogan,^ Captain Forrest's, &c. The 
abbey was built of flints, the remaining walls eight 
feet thick, tho' the stones that fac'd them are gone, 
but 'tis amazing to see how hard 'tis cemented. 
Reading has three handsome churches built in the 
quincunx fashion ;* and within a furlong of the town, 
to the south-west, within a hundred yards of the 
Kennet, on a rise call'd Cat's Grove Hill, is a stratum 
of oysters,' five or six inches thro' the hill, many large 
and entire, others mould'ring and decay'd, supposed to 
have been there buried at the Deluge. 

On Tuesday we set out early for our farm at 
Beenham,* papa being obliged to go there on business 
with his tenants, and we, not a little fond of the place, 
chose to accompany him in the excursion. It was a 
very agreeable one. Beenham lays about a mile out 
of the great road to Bath, on a pretty steep ascent, and 
near nine from Reading, which nine miles is allow'd 
to be as fine a ride with regard to the prospects on 

^ Caversham Park. 

* Probably she means one at each corner of the town. 
' Fossil bed of oysters. 

* Underwood Farm. 


each side as almost anywhere met with. As thro' my 1760 
journal I intend to mention every seat we pass nigh 
to, I must not omit that fine old mansion called Ingle- 
field House,^ now Mrs. Brathawit's, and a little farther, 
on the same hand, is Mrs. Zinzan s, a very delightfiil 
situation. We there call'd, and had the pleasure of 
finding them all well. After a short visit we proceeded 
to the farm, which is only three-quarters of a mile 
distance from their house. ... In the evening we 
returned again to Reading, which we left on Wednes- 
day by six, and in our way, to Basingstoke went to 
see Mr. Baker s new purchas d estate in Hampshire. 
'Tis prettily situated on Heckfield Heath (near Mr. 
George Pitt s). The family, as we knew, were gone 
into Norfolk, so that we went on to breakfast at 
Basingstoke, which in itself, and surrounding country, 
I think very indifferent ; from thence thro' a road 
equally unpleasant, we went to Andover, there lay. 
This place, on the borders of Salisbury Plain, is a 
great thoroughfare on the direct western road, is 
tolerably built, tolerably neat, and intolerably paved ; 
but the art of sticking the streets with the points of 
stones upwards greatly flourishes in every town al- 
most — you perceive they're proficients in this trade, 
but what end (except 'tis a 'shoemaker's plot), it can 
answer, 'tis difficult to imagine. On Thursday we 
went on to Salisbury, a city in Wiltshire, laying at 
the confluence of the two rivers Avon and Willy. 
When at this place the last summer, I own I thought 
it not in beauty what report had taught me to expect ; 
but now, by not having my expectation rais'd, which 
ever diminishes the lustre of new objects, it really 
wore an aspect much more striking ; it was indeed the 

^ Englefield House. 


1 760 race-time, which gave it an air of unusual gaiety. . . . 
The streets are all at right angles, according, as 'tis 
said, to the model of old Babylon, the market-place 
spacious ; but as to their canals, as they style them, I 
must say that in my opinion they deserve not so fine 
a title. The cathedral, begun by Bishop Poore, is in 
figure a cross ; above the roof, which is 1 1 6 feet high, 
rises the tower and spire, the highest and grandest in 
England, being from the ground 410 feet, yet the wall 
at top less than five inches diameter; its ornaments 
are rich. The tower has sixteen lights, four of a side. 
The inside of the church cannot, I think, be admir d ; 
the outside is simplicity with elegance, tho' some think 
this cathedral light and slender to a fault, for the 
building be strong, yet, having not the appearance of 
strength is as great a defect in beauty as being over- 
clumsy. This fabrick is remarkable for having an 
equal number of gates as months in the year, windows 
as days, and marble pillars as hours, a circumstance 
for which the architect is greatly found fault with, his 
plan so whimsical. . . . We went on to Woodyeates 
Inn, where we stay'd that night ; *tis a single house, a 
few miles after entering Dorsetshire, with a country 
round it very disagreeable. The next morning from 
this place we went to see* the seat of the Right Hon. 
George Doddington. The house, gardens, and park 
called Eastbury are eight miles in circumference. 
When we got to the park, choosing to walk, we 
quitted the vehicle. The building, as you see thro' a 
fine lawn, may be styl'd an elegant fabrick ; 'tis of 
stone, extending in length 570 feet, of which the main 
body of the house takes up only 144; the rest is 
arcades and offices. Having ascended a grand flight 
of steps, you come under a Doric portico, whose pedi- 



ment extends 62 feet, with pillars 46 feet high; from 1760 
thence you enter a noble hall, adorned by statues and 
busts, the saloon painted olive, the ornaments, as the 
cornice, &c., rich gilt ; the sofas in this apartment are 
very fine tapestry. On one side the saloon is the 
common dining and drawing room, on the other the 
best drawing-room, hung with and furnished with cut 
velvet ; the state bed-chamber, hung with crimson 
velvet furniture ; the same, the bed with gold, and 
lin'd with a painted India satin ; the dressing-room 
hung with green satin. The marble tables in all the 
principal rooms are fine, purchas d, the housekeeper 
informed us, out of one of the Italian palaces. I was 
much surprised to see in a house like this so few 
pictures, only one — which was Lord Stafford dictating 
to his secretary — worth remarking, a thing surprising 
at a time when it seems to be the peculiar taste of the 
gentlemen of this age to make collections, whether 
judges of paintings or ambitious to be thought so. 
The Managareth, or Chinese bedroom and dressing- 
room in the attic storey, is 'excessively droll and pretty, 
furnished exactly as in China, the bed of an uncommon 
size, seven feet wide by six long. In the common 
breakfast-room, fixed over the chimney is a clock 
which I think may be called curious, the dial white- 
flowered glass, the hand of the same material but of 
colours various, altogether forming a pretty ornament. 
The gardens are laid out as well as is possible without 
a view of water. . . . From Eastbury we went on to 
Blandford, a town about four miles distant ; *tis well 
built and populous, more so indeed at that time, as 
it was their fair and visitation time. . . . Blandford 
is seated on the river Stour. IVe heard that for- 
merly 'twas the greatest manufactury in England of 


1760 bone lace, but what is remarkable is that the poorer 
sort of its present inhabitants told us they never knew 
that It ever was so. 

As we prosecuted our tour, about a mile from this 
town, we saw the seat of Mr. Port man Seymour,^ 
and so on after two of Mr. Pled^lreirs,^ the one a new 
handsome house, the other the ancient family seat — a 
fine old mansion ; and as they are only three miles 
apart, I think the gentleman must have some diffi- 
culty (his father being lately dead), to determine at 
which to reside. We pass'd to a house of Mr. William 
Pitt s near Dorchester, which place we reached in the 
evening. This town has a neat appearance ; I believe, 
tho', only from being built entirely of stone, for the 
houses in general, except one or two in the High 
Street, are mean : 'tis, I think, a place of the least 
bustle I was ever in ; it seems serenity itself ; no 
one appeared agitated by hurry or confusion. Quite 
round the town is a very pleasant walk of sycamores, 
which must be very agreeable to the inhabitants. Mr. 
Hawkins, a gentleman of the place, gave us the favour 
of his company for the evening, and early the next 
morning we again set out. Near Dorchester^ are the 
remains of a Roman amphitheatre,* and one ^ of their 
encampments able to contain about 30,000 soldiers. 
The country here begins to wear a fine aspect, and 
every mile brings additions to its beauty ; our road 
from this morn was nothing but ascents or descents, 
no level, all a range of hills, no sooner at the foot of 

^ Bryanston Park. 

* Mr. PleydelPs, Whatcombe House. 

' Dorchester, the British Dwrinwyr, afterwards Roman Dumovaria* 
These walks were made by the Romans. 

* Amphitheatre called Maunbury, reckoned to hold 12,960 spectators. 

* Poundbury, or Maiden Castle, both near Dorchester. 


one, but a still higher offer'd for us to mount. Our 1760 
prospects must, of course, be charming, the sea adding 
to its grandeur. We breakfasted at Bridport.^ 'Tis 
large, on the seashore, stone built, chiefly cottages, but 
they are neat, and therefore the town cannot be styl'd a 
bad one. Once this was the only place for twisting ropes 
for the Royal Navy. They still carry on the trade, and 
'tis charming to see how industrious their poor are — 
every child of five years being able to earn threepence 
or a groat a day. At this town we breakfasted ; and 
not far from it is a hill calFd after it by the name of 
Bridport. This hill it was that gave us sensations too 
difficult to describe, and impossible to say whether 
pleasure or terror was the predominant passion of our 
bewildered senses. We got out of the coach, trusting 
more to our own steadiness than to our seemingly com- 
posed animals, and had then in view a prospect, if I may 
use the expression, terribly pleasing. . . . The scene 
continued for a mile and a half. Its length made us 
grow courageous, and we left it more in admiration 
than in fear, reaching that night Axminster. We 
found ourselves in a town of a very poor appearance, 
nothing in it worth a stranger s notice, except the 
carpet manufactory to see ; that is indeed well worth 
while ; the weaving of it is extremely curious, and gave 
us ladies the more pleasure, I believe, as our sex are 
here admitted to be artists — an uncommon privilege* 
at this time of day, when the men seem to engross 
every possible branch of business to themselves. 
Axminster is on the great Western road, and the first 

^ A seaport and municipal borough. Pop. in 1896, 7000. 

' The carpet-weaving is now removed from Axminster to Wilton. 
Miss Girle would have been satisfied with the present progress in 
occupation for women, and, for 137 years ago, seems to have been before 
her age in thought. 



1760 town in the county of Devon. We were led by 
Camden, and curiosity to take an inside view of the 
church, he having told us of the monuments of two 
Danish princes slain at the battle of Bruneburg in 
this neighbourhood,^ fought by King Athelstane, with 
seven princes, over whom he obtained victory ; but 
really the sight of their highnesses afforded us great 
entertainment, nor should I have had the least notion by 
their present clumsy appearance such uncouth lumps 
of stone were once designed to represent royalty. We 
left Axminster next day. Near it is a seat of Mr. 
Tucker s,^ so sweetly situated that none can, I fancy, 
exceed it. Indeed the country here is most amazing 
fine, and the Vale of Honiton. a few miles farther, so 
far exceeds any idea one can form of a landscape, that 
'tis in vain to endeavour at the description. The 
inhabitants of Dorsetshire, they say, pique themselves 
on what Charles II. said of their county, which was, 
** that in or out of England he never saw its equal ; " 
but sure he had then, I should imagine, never been in . 
Devonshire ; the former is very charming, but still in 
my opinion exceeded by the latter. At Hainton we 
made a stay of some hours. *Tis really a very pretty 
town. Five miles from it is a seat of Sir William 
Young s, which we passed that day in our way to 
Exeter. And now I must give some account of this 
the capital of Devon. It stands on the east of the 
river Exe, which washes its walls, on a hill of a gentle 
rise, encompassed with a ditch and strong wall a mile 
and half in circumference. I must own myself greatly 

* Battle of Brunedune in 937, fought against Anlaf the Dane. In 
this were slain five kings, seven princes, a Bishop of Sherborne, and 
5000 of the enemy. (Vide Saxon Chronicle.) 

* Cory ton House. 


disappointed in this city, styl'd the " London of the 1760 
West." That title, I suppose, it derives from its 
trade, for its inhabitants appear very industrious, and 
'tis infinitely to their credit to say that business seems 
their chief employment ; but 'tis the place I imagined 
so much superior to what it is. It principally consists 
of one very long street, tolerably broad, but not very 
straight, the houses every one of which are shops of 
a most ancient model ; indeed we saw not any that 
can be call'd good in this grand city, consisting of 
fifteen parish churches (besides a cathedral), several 
of which in the Civil Wars, they told us, were ex- 
posed to sale by the common cryer. The Romans 
are supposed to have been here,^ among other pro- 
bable proofs, from many of their coins dug up there. 
Their Cathedral is in general, I believe, thought 
a good one. It exceeds, in my opinion, either Wor- 
cester, Bristol, Gloucester, Winchester, or Salisbury in 
the inside ; but none IVe ever seen equals that of 
York. This at Exeter was thirty years building ; 
the choir, by Bishop Wharleward,^ in the year 1150 ; 
the body, by Quivel, in 1280. Grandison consecrated 
the two last arches at the west end in 1327, and 
covered the whole roof; and Courtenay completed 
the north tower in 1485 ; and 'tis very remarkable to 
observe the uniformity of the whole, for no one can 
discover the least incongruity in the several parts, so 
much does it appear the work of the same architect. 
I must not omit to mention as a curious piece of 
antiquity the Bishop's throne* of Gothic woodwork 
carving- Indeed it may justly be admir'd, the canopy 

^ Its Roman name was I sea Damnoniorum ; British, Caer Isc. 

^ Bishop Warelwast. 

^ Made in 1470 under Bishop Stapleton. 


1760 being carried up in a light taste for above sixty feet- 
'Tis thought to be coeval with the See, and at the 
demolition of Episcopacy in the time of Charles L 
was remov'd, but 'tis supposed privately order d to be 
carefully preserved, as since it has been replaced with- 
out having received the least damage. I think they 
don't at this Cathedral perform the choir service at all 
well. There are many ancient monuments ; some of 
those shown to us as most deserving notice I must here 
mention. The first discoverer of Newfoundland he's 
here, Captain Gilbert ; Bishop Stapleton,^ who founded 
and laid the first stone of Exeter College, Oxon ; 
Bishop Bidgood, who originally was only a Blue-coat 
boy of this city ; Bishop Oldham s effigy, with his 
hands nail'd together ; he was excommunicated for not 
turning Catholic, but died before the time designed for 
his execution ; Lady Barret, in a little chapel, now 
called by her name, because she there lay in state ; a 
skeleton effigy of Bishop Lacy, who in endeavouring 
to imitate our Savour in fasting forty days, on the 
thirty-ninth fell a martyr, I think one may say, to his 
presumption ; and in the library belonging to the 
Cathedral is Judge Doddridge and his lady, who was 
maid of honour to Queen Elizabeth. In the body of 
the church is a clock very remarkable for its antiquity 
and workmanship. 'Twas made some hundred years 
since,^ has three dials; as for the hour, minute hand, 
and moon s age, 'tis really curious. The organ ^ is 
esteem'd a fine one. The choir has two sets of 
hangings, tapestry and velvet, and gilt plate for the 

* Murdered in a mob at Cheapside for espousing the cause of Edward 

' Made time of Edward II I., minute dial added in 1760, same year a& 
this Journal. 

' Built by Looscmore, 1665. 



communion service. The altar-piece, representing the 1 760 
inside of the church, is reckoned a fine painting well 
preserved, except some little injury it received by 
three or four bullets fired at it in the great Rebellion 
in Oliver Cromwells time. The painted glass, the 
figures of the patriarchs, kings, &c., were greatly 
damaged by the Reformers* zeal. Here, I think, finishes 
my account of the Cathedral. 

In the north angle of the city, on the highest 
ground, stand the ruins of a castle called Rougemont,^ 
formerly the residence of the West Saxon kings, after- 
wards the Earls of Cornwall. It was surrounded by 
a high wall and deep ditch ; had a rampart of earth 
parallel to the top of the wall overlooking the city and 
county. The inhabitants have for some years been 
filling up the ditch and on it planting trees, which on 
one side of a fine terrace form a grove, and the 
other being what one may style a natural hanging 
shrubbery, beyond which the rising country forms a 
charming prospect, which together makes the walk 
(called Northern Hay), very delightful. . . . On the 
Monday morning we left Exeter, and breakfasted at 
the town of Chidley,^ of which, as nothing can be said 
in its praise, Til make no further mention. 

We were surprised in our travels thro' Devon- 
shire to see their cottages of an appearance really 
meaner than in any county is usual ; and indeed, as 
by fatal experience, they have found residences terribly 
unsafe; for on July 2nd, at Offington, near Exeter, 
more than twenty were demolished ; the poor people 
were in their beds, and one old woman in hers 

* Built by William the Conqueror on an older site, given by him to 
Baldwin de Brionne, husband of William's niece, Albreda. 

* Chudleigh, now celebrated for its caves, with prehistoric bones, &c. 


1 760 drowned by the rain being prodigious heavy ; it 
came pouring in such torrents from the hills behind, 
and hurl'd down so great a quantity of stones of such 
amazing size, that soon broke down walls built only 
of a composition of clay and straw, call'd cob. The 
houses were instantly overflow'd and tumbling to 
pieces ; all were in the utmost consternation, as one 
may easily imagine, from the ruinous state their habi- 
tations are still in. But to quit a subject so dismal. 

We that night lay at Ashburton,^ a tolerable market- 
town on the great road ; the next morning we break- 
fasted at a pretty rural place call'd Ivy Bridge,^ and in 
the evening reached Plymouth. As we were strangers 
at the place, and rather fatigued that day with tra- 
velling, we choose to limit our curiosity by deferring 
our rambles till next day, papa that night only send- 
ing to a gentleman of his acquaintance (there quar- 
tered), desiring the favour of his company at breakfast. 
He came early next day, and it being proposed to 
spend great part of it at Lord Edgecumbe's,* he was 
so obliging as to procure us a safe and large boat for 
our little voyage ; but first, breakfast being over, we 
went to view part of the town. 

Plymouth (as must be generally known), is a place 
of great consideration and note, situated between two 
large outlets of the sea, in the bottom of a very large 
Sound, which on every side is encompassed with 
hills, the shore steep, and in the entrance into the 
bay has a most dangerous rock, which, being cover d 
at high water, many ships have there been lost when 
they thought themselves perfectly safe ; but, as I 

^ One of the old Stannary towns of Devon, on the edge of Dartmoor. 
' A romantic spot on the river Erme. 
' Mount Edgecumbe. 


learned at Plymouth, on the above-mentioned rock, 1760 
caird the Eddystone, was erected two years ago a 
new lighthouse,^ so contrived as it can*t take fire, 
which misfortune happened to the last there built, 
which was burnt down. Having walked about some 
time, seen the Victualling Office (in which the bisket 
bakehouse performers gave us great entertainment), 
with the parade, quays, markets, &c., except the gar- 
rison, which we left for the evening, and now went 
to our boat, which lay ready for us. 'Tis by water to 
my Lord's not quite a league, yet by land, tho' in 
Devonshire, more than fifty miles, being obliged to go 
so far round and thro' part of Cornwall. 

We had not been ten minutes on the watery element 
when Mount Edgecumbe presented a view which none 
could exceed. It lies on the opposite shore from 
Plymouth, on the other side of Hamoaze. In less 
than half-an-hour we quitted the boat, and, entering 
the park, were then at the seat indeed justly stil'd 
one of the grandest spots in our charming isle. The 
gardens, which we first went over, seem in the taste 
every one could wish. In the orangery are some of 
the largest fruit I have ever seen. In the Maze, twenty- 
five orange-trees brought from the Straits, that for 
height, tho' lopp d, are really curiosities. In one part 
of the gardens next the sea my Lord^ has erected a 
small battery, where, on any particular occasion of 
rejoicing, they can fire twenty-one pieces of cannon, 
caird a royal salute. Here is a pavilion, from which 
is a very fine view. 

* The third. The first was washed away ; second burnt in 1755 • 
Smeaton's, finished in 1759, now removed to the Hoe; fourth opened 

* Richard, second Baron Edgecumbe. 


1760 Having walk'd over the gardens, we ascended a fine 
lawn, at the top of which stands the ancient mansion 
(a stone building), and both within and without bear- 
ing testimony of the antiquity it boasts.^ Leaving the 
house, we mounted a steep ascent, and for about a 
mile and a half went on in a walk, where on one side 
we had a rising, the other a hanging wood, thro' the 
latter a very delightful prospect, and the whole being 
park, and the number of deer, no small addition to a 
scene so pleasing. The extent of our rambles that 
way was to a rustic arch of stone erected at the top 
of the hill, from which the view of the sea is indeed 
noble, and from this point we see the Eddystone. 
Farther beyond the arch is a zig-zag walk, which goes 
quite down again to the shore ; but we now pursued 
our way back thro' the park, and reach'd very soon a 
little temple which afforded us a repast very agree- 
ably. This spot, commanding a sweet view of the 
winding harbour underneath, and being in the midst 
of a wood guarded from sun-influence, was fixed on 
by a large party of gentlemen and ladies, who came 
that day on a scheme of pleasure to Mount Edge- 
cumbe, as a place to enjoy in the most rural manner 
the cold collation they brought there. Captain Mar- 
riott was to have been with them, but at our arrival 
insisted on accompanying us to my Lord's : there we 
met his friends, who, with the greatest civility, desir'd 
us to refresh ourselves. With thanks we accepted the 
obliging offer, and the day being extremely hot, we 
received from it a new recruit of alacrity to pursue our 
rambles, and took leave of the company, sorry not to 
have it in our power, but in words, to return the 
receiv'd obligation. 

^ Original portion built in 1550. 



In our way back thro' the grounds we saw many 1760 
fine prospects, too great a number to give descrip- 
tion. From one place the views have a very pretty 
effect from seven vistas that surround you ; at the end 
of each is a different object ; from one the town of 
Plymouth, with its churches and spires ; another, the 
Isle of St. Nicholas, on which is a castle commanding 
the entrance into Hamoaze and Cutwater ; from the 
third you see Mount Batten ; the fourth, Plymouth 
dock ; fifth, the county of Cornwall ; and at the end 
of the two others, rising at the end over the top of 
trees, are a round and square tower at a great distance. 
More than five hours, I think, we spent at my Lord's, 
admiring its several beauties. We at last reach'd the 
shore, and, entering into the boat, soon were wafted 
to the dock, the place we were next to see. The dock 
is two miles from Plymouth, and is, as I was informed, 
as compleat an arsenal as any the Government are 
masters of Here ships are built or brought to be 
repair d, and there are all sorts of warehouses for 
naval stores for those ships appointed to lay there, 
besides militarv stores and handsome houses for the 
officers. They are now building a new dry dock (a fit 
size for the ** Royal George/* ^ our largest man-of-war), 
which 'tis suppos'd to excel any of the kind, it being 
hewn out of a solid rock of marble, and lined with 
Portland stone. We once more took boat, and went 
round several men-of-war ; saw the ** Formidable," a 
fine ship of ninety guns, taken by Sir Edward Hawke. 
After viewing the shipping, we were all landed at the 
hospital, which is recently erected, consisting of six 
separate buildings of stone, makes a fine appearance, 

' This vessel sank in Portsmouth Harbour, with over eight hundred 
souls on board, in 1782. 


1 760 and, what is more to the founder s honour, will afford 
a most happy relief to the sailors and soldiery. Near 
here is the place where part of the French prisoners 
are kept, of which there are at Plymouth between four 
and five thousand. We saw them at some distance, 
amusing themselves in a field adjoining their prison. 
From the hospital we walked to our inn, not having 
any curiosity to see the inside ; but the gentlemen 
walk'd over it, and afterwards overtook us at our 
entering the town. 'Twas then five o*clock, and having 
been out from before ten, and, I suppose, walked more 
than nine miles, we found ourselves ready for dinner, 
which waited only our appearance. We that day had 
procured for us those celebrated fish John Dorees, and 
red mullet. As Tm not in the least fond of fish, I 
can't be a judge of its excellence ; but really the latter, 
which, on account of the trail, is styFd the ** Sea 
Woodcock," is beautiful to the eye and has a flavour 
most remarkably fine. The former is a creature of 
an aspect rather horrible ; nor does the goodness, in 
my opinion, at all compensate for its figure, tho* 
Quin ^ (who now lives at Bath), often, it seems, comes 
from thence to Plymouth to eat them in perfection ; 
therefore I suppose them deemed curious, as he is said 
to deserve in some degree that unmanly title of an 
epicure. Provisions here, except fish, by the con- 
tinual resort of company, are dearer than one should 
imagine. Quin, I suppose, thought so, by the follow- 
ing droll essay of his wit, which Captain Marriott was 
giving us an account of. The last time of his being 
there, after a fortnight's stay at his inn, and being 
kept in his usual magnificent table, on viewing his 

^ James Quin, celebrated actor and gourmand, bom 1693, died 1766 ; 
spent his last eighteen years retired at Bath. 


bill, thought it, I fancy, a little extravagant, for, after ^76o 
discharging it, on going away, in an arch tone, ** Her- 
bert,'' says he, **give me the watchword." ** Sir," 
replied the landlord, ** I don't understand you." '* No," 
said Quin ; **and hain't you robb'd me, and is it not 
customary for highwaymen to give the watchword?" 
The joke caused a smile, which I suppose made its 
author go off in good-humour, tho' eas'd of his money. 
After we had din'd, it then being the cool of the 
evening, we went to take a view of the citadel or 
garrison, a small but regular fortification over against 
the Isle of St. Nicholas. In my description of this 
place I fear (from not having a knowledge of that 
science), making a mistake ; but that reason, I hope, 
will plead my excuse ; but the terms of fortification 
are quite out of female knowledge ; and what with 
many other things the men would perhaps say, we 
should not endeavour to understand ; yet I must own 
'tis my opinion that women might be made acquainted 
with various subjects they are now ignorant of, more 
for want of instruction than capacity, and what at first 
may appear intricate, after a quarter of an hour's 
converse might give entertainment. But is it any- 
thing surprising the sex should amuse themselves 
with trifles ^ when these lords of creation will not give 
themselves the trouble (in my conscience, I believe 
for fear of being outshone), to enlarge our minds by 
making them capable to retain those of more import- 
ance ? But to digress no further, but proceed with my 
account of the citadel. From what I learn'd, by over- 
hearing the gentlemen discourse in their view of the 
works (being as unobserv'd as our grandmother Eve 

* Pity our heroine could not have had a peep at women's progress at 
the end of the nineteenth century. 


1760 listening to the angel's tale to Adam, to whom she 
afterwards told her hearing the story — 

" As in a shady nook she stood behind, 
Just then retum'd, at shut of evening flowers." 

— Milton, 

Tis, as I said before, a regular fortification, inacces- 
sible by sea, not exceedingly strong by land, only, by 
being of a stone hard as marble, they say it would not 
soon yield to the batteries of an enemy. 'Tis sur- 
rounded by a deep trench three-quarters of a mile in 
circumference, out of which was dug the stone the 
whole was built with. It has three hundred great guns 
on the walls, which stand thickest towards the sea. 
Several are planted lying almost level with the water, 
which gives the greatest security to ships in harbour. 

From the town, which lies sloping on the same 
rock towards the east of the sea, call'd Catswater, we 
ascended the glacis, pass'd the trench by the draw- 
bridge, and thro* the bastions, and came into a sort 
of field, where are the barracks for the soldiers, 
which really may be styl'd huts, just to shelter them 
from the inclemency of the weather. Here, too, are 
the guard-room and casements, as I think they are 
called, buildings of such prodigious strength as to 
be perfectly safe from the reach of bombs, and here, 
in case of a siege, the soldiers off guard retire. 

Having now seen all here mentioned, we last went to 
walk on the ramparts, where the prospects of the sea, 
the shipping, the lower battery, &c., was so delightful, 
that it detained us till night had near drawn her sable 
mantle o'er the whole. 'Twas near ten when we 
returned to supper, and the remainder of our evening 
was spent in conversing of the day's diversion, and of 


how much more pleasure we had received than even 176a 
we expected from the town of Plymouth and the places 
that surround it. 

The next morning, soon aften ten, we set out 
again for Ashburton, after returning thanks to Captain 
Marriott for the civilities we received the preceding 
day. Accompanying us to the end of Plymouth, he 
took his leave, and we went on to Ivy Bridge, and in 
the evening reached Ashburton ; reached Exeter early 
on Friday, stayed there the whole day, and got the 
next morn by twelve to Honiton. When we before 
were at this town, knowing we were to return thro' it, 
we defer d till then seeing the making of bone lace ; 
so now, as soon as we had breakfasted, went to view 
this their chief manufacture, which really gave us 
great pleasure, and much more to see 'twas our own 
country-women that could arrive at such perfection 
in this work, as I hope will prevent our ladies from 
forming the least wish to have the right Flanders ; for 
really, on comparing two pieces, ours had the first 
preference ; and if so, how very cruel not to encourage 
the industrious poor of our native land. After seeing 
the lace-making we went to the broad-cloth weaving, 
which, tho' in a different way, is still curious ; and 
from thence, it being market-day, we strolled round 
inquiring the price of several commodities, and, igno- 
rant Londoners as we were, quite astonish'd to hear 
we might have a couple of fine chickens for sixpence,* 
a pound of veal for three-halfpence, and other provi- 
sions in proportion cheap. What a surprising differ- 
ence from the Metropolis ! From the market we went 
back to our inn, and there, for the remainder of our 

^ This account shows how railways have almost equalised the price 
of provisions, &c, throughout the country. 


1760 stay, amus*d ourselves with the transcription on the 
wainscot, which, at such places, I think every idler 
seems to subscribe their unit for the entertainment of 
the next idle gazer. I found the following four lines, 
which perhaps by many have been found too true in 
their pursuit of grandeur : — 

" How wretched is our fate. 
What hazards do we nin ; 
We are wicked to be great, 
And great to be undone." 

After a stay of nearly five hours at Honiton, we 
pursued our journey ; and having mounted one of 
those hills which surround this pretty town, we had 
again in view the fine vale I've mentioned before, than 
which I think no prospect of the mind can surpass in 
beauty. We that night lay at Axminster, and from 
thence, to have the pleasure of variety, the next morn 
we took the other road to Salisbury from that we 
came. Soon after we got out of Axminster we came 
into Somersetshire. A mile from Chard, and not far 
from Crookhorn,^ where we breakfasted, lies the seat 
of Earl Powlet,* on the brow of the Serene Hill. The 
house appears good tho* ancient, the grounds of vast 
extent, commanding fine prospects. We got that 
night to Yeovil,^ a really pretty town, and the country 
round it very delightful. We pass'd a seat of Mr. 
Fane s,* near this place. At our arrival we failed not 
going to Mr. Forbes's, an inn * so very famous for a 
most extraordinary kitchen, that we were told it was 
worth going miles to see it ; and indeed it answered 

* Crewkerne. 

- Hinton St. George. 

3 Celebrated for its glove manufactories. 

* Brimpton Hall. 
» " The Angel." 



description, and may be calFd a general repository for 1 760 
curiosities of every sort its owner can collect — as china, 
pictures, shells, antiques, &c., all rangd in order. 
There is two dishes of Roman earth, very handsome, 
and of great value, having been in this town three 
hundred years ; and in another corner lay a lamp, 
which Mr. Forbes said was really dug out of the ruins 
of Herculaneum, and therefore esteems it highly. But 
'tis not only the kitchen at this inn deserves notice ; 
the whole house for neatness is a curiosity. 

*Twas rather late next day when we left Yeovil ; 
two miles from the town we ascended a long steep emi- 
nence called Babylon Hill ; the origin of its title none 
could inform us of, but papa imagined it was from the 
resemblance it bears to the Hanging Gardens of that 
place. At the top the view is very pleasing. As we 
pass'd Sherborne we saw the ancient seat of the Digby 
family,^ seeming a vast pile of building. Just before 
we got to Shaftesbury we had a prodigious hill to go 
up, so steep the horses could hardly gain the top. 
There stands the town,* the only one I ever saw on 
so high a situation, as generally for the convenience 
of water they lay low. The prospects surrounding it 
are indeed charming, more so, I suppose, from the 
novelty of the place. They have two sweet walks, 
one caird Park Hill, and Castle Hill ; from the former 
is a zig-zag way down the hill, which is a common 
footpath to the inhabitants, tho' to us it appeared 
perpendicular, and even frightful to see them un- 
concernedly descend. The day following we went 
for many miles over the plains, to which we arrived 
by a terrible hill, five miles off Shaftesbury, called the 

^ Sherborne Castle. 

- Of great antiquity. The British Caer Palladwr. 


1760 White Sheet We breakfasted at Salisbury, and that 
night lay at Stockbridge, getting to Winchester early 
the next day. No place this summer is more gay 
than this, prodigious deal of company resorting to the 
camp, his Highness the Duke of York^ was there 
then, and excessively admir'd for his civilities to all 
ranks. The first night of his arrival, so wonderful a 
mortal is a prince, the streets were throng'd to see 
him, upon which he threw open the window and with 
universal applause was gazed at. Winchester is a 
mile and a half within its walls, has at some distance 
a venerable appearance, but in itself nothing remark- 
able ; here is no manufacture, no nagivation, and of 
course no trade, but what is naturally transacted by 
its inhabitants and the neighbouring villages. The 
Cathedral on the outside is extremely plain ; on 
the in, 'tis esteemed fine ; the oddity of the tower 
greatly strikes the eye ; they say indeed 'twas never 
finished and 'tis supposd to have been intended to 
support a spire, as it has strength for one higher than 
that at Salisbury. On the south side of the west gate 
of the city was formerly a castle, and in the place 
where that stood Charles II. began a noble design 
for a royal palace^ in 1683; a large cupola was in- 
tended 30 feet above the roof for a view of the sea ; 
the shell is said to have cost ;^2 5,000. I think there 
are 27 windows in front, and the apartments on the 
principal floor 20 feet high. His late Majesty George 
I. gave to the Duke of Bolton the pillars, of Italian 
marble, which were to have supported the staircase, 
said to be a present from the great Duke of Tuscany. 

' Edward, Duke of York, third son of George II. 
* Architect,*|Sir Christopher Wren. The portion completed made 
into barracks in 18 10. 


The centre of the palace being exactly in a line 1760 
with the centre of the west end of the Cathedral, 
there a street 200 feet broad was to have been built, 
houses for the nobility ; the parks were to have been 
ten miles round. Winchester, if this grand work had 
been compleated, would indeed have been a city of 
magnificence. They have now eight regiments en- 
camped there, seven militia, one of regulars. We saw 
the Berkshire exercise, who really performed well ; 
the view of a camp and their martial music is very 
pleasing. I was in Colonel Vansittart's ^ tent, fur- 
nished in the taste adapted to the place ; those for 
the soldiery are of a much smaller size, and besides 
them are a great number of sutler s tents, or rather 
hovels. From Winchester we had proposed ourselves 
great pleasure by going from thence to Gosport, to 
pay a visit to a Berkshire family residing there during 
the war, with whom we had been extremely intimate. 
We that night lay at Wickham,* one of the most 
rural pretty towns I ever saw. The next day, as we 
drew nigh to Gosport, our fear of not seeing Mr. 
Percy s family increased, as they might possibly be 
gone on some travelling excursion, but on our arrival 
we found them at home, and the additional pleasure 
of finding Mrs. Durell and Mrs. Percy *s sister, from 
their house from Southampton, to which place we 
once intended to go on purpose to see them. The 
reception we met with from these our agreeable 
friends show'd the sincerity of the many wishes 
they've expressed that we would, while they continued 
there, make Gosport be listed among our other tours. 

* Of Shottesbrook, Berks. 

' Birthplace of the celebrated William of Wykeham, Bishop of Win- 



1760 . . . Mrs. Dure!, Miss Brown, Mr. Percy, papa, 
and myself, accepted an invitation from Mr. Jones, 
(agent of the Hospital) (we three were the only 
ladies) ; the invitation was to see the Royal Hospital 
at Haslar. The building is grand, taking up within 
its walls 32 acres. It commands a fine prospect of 
the sea, Spithead, Southsea Castle, and other points 
of view. After an agreeable day, in the evening we 
returned in a six-oar'd boat to Gosport. Friday morn 
we went to Stokes Bay to see them take shrimps and 
other fish ; here is a fine dry heath commanding the 
sea and the Isle of Wight. We had in a former 
journey been on that very charming island, so were 
now satisfied with the pleasing view of it from this 
place. Here, having spent two hours, we returned to 
the town, and in walking round employed another. 

Gosport, like most seaports, is a place of very in- 
different appearance, and where we should not choose 
to reside, except it were at Coal Harbour, which, 
laying by the waterside, is pleasant. After having 
dined, our large party, in a man-of-war s boat, were 
wafted over to Portsmouth. The crossing is short 
but agreeable, by the having several remarkable 
points of view, as Block House Fort and Point, the 
round tower opposite, the Royal Hospital at Haslar, 
the two neighbouring towns, Spithead, &c. Having 
landed at Sallee Port, we walked over the town, which 
I think C9.n hardly boast of a superior elegance to 
Gosport, and having gone thro' the ordnance or gun 
wharf, been round the ramparts, and taken a view of 
the inside of the church, we next went to the dock, 
where we had been invited to tea at Mr. Moriarty's 
there, by his lady and himself We were treated 
with great politeness, and after a visit that appeared 


too short because so agreeable, we again sallied out 1760 
to satisfy our curiosity, a passion very prevalent in most 
minds, tho* by the men deem'd the characteristic of 
the female one only, but to which of right belonging 
ril leave to abler pens and pursue my tale. 

In the yards, the dock, and storehouses of Ports- 
mouth the furniture they say is laid up in the most exact 
order, so that the workmen may find anything they 
want even in the dark. The remains of the dreadful 
fire, July 2nd, was then smoking, and terrible is it to 
behold anywhere the ravages of this merciless enemy. 
Tis computed that the loss here was not less than 
;^90,ooo, and storehouses, a rope-walk that was a 
room 170 feet long partly demolished, a 1000 tun 
of hemp, with other magazines. Most people really 
think this destruction was caus'd by lightning^ and 
some affirm they saw a ball of fire fall on one of the 
storehouses, while others imagine it was a premedi- 
tated design to destroy the whole yard. . . . We 
next went on board a man-of-war ; 'twas the ** Tartar," 
that has done so great execution when commanded 
by the brave Lockhart. From this ship we went into 
the hull of the ** Britannia," now building; it is 170 
feet long on the inside by 50, and is to carry 100 
guns. The bulk of these prodigious bodies seems to 
the eye amazing. We next went to view the three 
ships of Thuroes^ squadron, laying then at Ports- 
mouth, and after that proceeded to the Academy to 
see the model of a loo-gunship call'd the ** Victory," 
which was cast away in the year '46. This model 
cost more than 100 guineas. . . . 'Twas pretty late 

Mt is now asserted to have been lightning. 

' Thurot, the Captain of the French squadron ; these three ships 
were taken by Capt. John Elliot off the Isle of Man. 


1760 before we got home to Mr. Percy's, but the remainder 
of the evening we spent very happily with our obliging 
friends ; but the next morn arrived, and on that we 
were to quit their hospitable mansion. The 1 2th hour 
of that day was a witness to our parting, and we then 
quitted Gosport and set out for the Metropolis. 

About five miles after leaving Gosport we found 
ourselves on those delightful eminences call'd Ports- 
down Hills. They extend into Sussex ; the soil is 
chalk, and the face of the country greatly to be 
admird. The ports, creeks, bays, ocean, ships. Isle 
of Wight, Porchester Castle, towns of Gosport, Ports- 
mouth, Southampton, Chichester, and in short under 
one view all the coast from Portland Isle to Sussex, 
gentlemen's seats scattered here and there to make the 
prospect still more beautiful. We that night lay at 
Liphook, and the next morn came down Hind Hill, 
an old romantic spot, to which is given the nickname 
of the Devil's Punch Bowl, and indeed one seems 
to travel round a basin of amazing size, which road 
appears from the inside of a vehicle rather frightful 
than pleasing. We went thro' the neat town of God- 
aiming, and passed a seat of Lady Oglethorp s. We 
breakfasted at Guildford, which is well built. We then 
went to see some painted glass, ^ which is esteemed 
curious. 'Tis in the chapel of the Hospital, founded by 
Bishop Abbot, 1619, for twelve old men and eight 
women, who were all to be above sixty years of age. 
The road to Leatherhead is, by most people, thought 
to be more than agreeable ; 'tis, indeed, thro' a series 
of cornfields, and in the miles one passes at least ten 
seats, tho' to my eye, who in the course of three 

* Supposed to be of Flemish origin, and more ancient than the 
Hospital's foundation. 



weeks had seen so many places where Nature shone 1760 
with such superior lustre, poor Surrey to me seem'd 
dull, flat, and totally void of the all-enlivening faculty 
of pleasing. . . . The owners of the ten mansions 
above mentioned, the first from Guildford, was the 
Lord Onslow's,^ the second. Admiral Boscawens, 
third, fourth, and fifth. Lord Pennant's, Lacy's, and 
General Howard's, and the rest were Lady Mary 
Tryon's, Lord Effingham's, Mr. Warren's, and two 
more, about the owners of which I was not so fortu- 
nate to gain intelligence. . . . We that night reach'd 
Leatherhead, pay'd our compliments to Mr. Dowsett's 
family there. The next morning having breakfasted 
and spent some hours, we set out for my Uncle 
Mount's at Clapham, and after a short visit to them, 
we proceed'd to London, reaching our Lincoln's Inn 
Fields early enough in a very delightful evening, 
almost to regret our arrival at the Metropolis at a 
season when the country was in the height of beauty, 
and the great city dull, dusty, and abandoned. 

Miles we Travel I'd 
from London. 

July 7. Monday, Breakfasted^ at Maidenhead at 

" Orkney Arms " 25 

Lay at Reading, "Black Bear" . . .14 
„ 8. Tuesday, went to Beenham. and returned to 

Reading 18 

„ 9. Wednesday, Br. at Basingstoke, " The Crown" 1 7 
Lay at Andover, "The White Hart " . .18 
„ 10. Thursday, Br. at Salisbury, "The King's 

Arms" . 18 

Lay at Woodgates Inn . .11 

I Fell Hill. 

^ The reader must remember breakfast here stands in place of 
modem luncheon, tho* earlier — virtually ddjdiner d la fourchette. 




Miles we Traveird 
from London. 

1 76 1 












11. Friday, Br. at Blandford, "The Greyhound 
Lay at Dorchester, " The Antelope " . 

1 2. Saturday, Br. at Bridport, " The Bull " 
Lay at Axminster, " The Green Dragon " 

13. Sunday, Br. at Honiton, "The Dolphin" 
Lay at Exeter, " The New Inn " . 

14. Monday, Br. at Chudleigh, "The King* 

Arms" ...... 

Lay at Ashburton, " The New Inn " 

15. Br. at Ivy Bridge, "The Prince George" 
Lay at Plymouth, "The Prince George" 

17. I^y at Ashburton, "The New Inn" . 

18. Lay at Exeter ..... 

19. Br. at Honiton ..... 
Lay at Axminster .... 

20. Sunday, Br. at Crewkerne, " The George " 
Lay at Yeovil, " The Angel " 

21. Monday, lay at Shaftesbury, "The George' 

22. Br. at Salisbury, "The King's Arms" . 

23. Br. at Winchester, "The Chequer" 
Lay at Wickham, " The King's Head " 

24. Thursday, lay at Gosport 

26. Br. Saturday, din'd at Petersfield, "White 


Lay at Liphook, " The Anchor " . 

27. Sunday, Br. at Guildford, " The White Hart 
Lay at Leatherhead, " The Swan " 

28. Monday, got to London 

We traveird in all . . . 
















The next year, 1761, our heroine was destined to 
lose her beloved father. In her diary she says : — 

'^July $lA. — This year I had the inexpressible loss 
of one of the best of fathers. Having been ill long, and 
London not agreeing with his constitution, he had 
just purchas'd a house in the Circus, Bath, and our 
goods were packing to remove there, but on his death 
my mother and I, preferring the country, took a house 


of Lady Buck's at Caversham, in Oxfordshire, having 1761 
formerly lived in that neighbourhood."^ 

On September the 8th Miss Girle notes : — 
** Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Meck- 
lenburg came to London. The marriage was per- 
formed the same evening." This was the marriage 
of George HL; and on the 22nd of September Miss 
Girle writes the following interesting account of the 
coronation, entitled — 


Tuesday, Sep***"^- 25th, 1761. 

The journal of a day, or short abstract of more 
than twenty hours pass'd by one of the innumerable 
parties assembled at their Majesties* coronation. In 
a letter to a friend in the country. 

Safe, perfectly safe from the dreaded coronation 
is your Caroline ; but take the promised journal as it 
follows. On Monday last I set out from my Uncle's 
in Kent, very early in the morn, and thro' as much 
rain as I believe ever fell in one day, arrived at the 
Metropolis by the hour of dinner ; a gloomy prospect 
the badness of the weather, as I then thought of the 

morrow. On entering Mr. M *s, was surprised to 

see the whole company in all the elegance of dress, 
but soon was informed that we were to go that evening 

to our seats — this at Mr request, a poor timorous 

mortal, not unlike another gentleman of my acquain- 
tance in Hants county ; for as we were to have a file 
of musketeers for our guard, the danger of going in 

^ One of Miss Girle's homes was at Beenham, only about nine 
miles off. 


1 76 1 the morning could not have been great. However 
'twas settled, and about five parts of our company left 
us. When they were gone and I was drest (in my 
coronation robes), we drank tea, and others of our 

party coming to sup at Mr. M 's, we left not this 

house till near eleven, at which time three more coaches 
set out, and without difficulty joined the rest long before 
twelve. Our room in the Broad Sanctuary (for which 
was given 120 guineas), was commodious, our party, 
consisting of twenty-four, quite agreeable, and our view 
of the procession (in our own opinion, which you'll own 
a very material point), the very best of any of the sur- 
rounding multitude ; for we were just at an angle of 
the platform fronting the band of music, and the Con- 
duit, which ran with wine for the day. Thus situated 
and all assembled, not having couches sufficient for the 
repose of all (tho* there were in an adjoining apartment 
two beds for the most delicate of our ladies), conse- 
quently the most of us were to sit up, and of course 
cards (the usual triflers of the time of idle people), were 
proposed, and the remaining dark hours employed at 
commerce and lottery. The morning's dawn, how- 
ever, was most impatiently expected, and tho* curiosity 
is only stil'd a characteristic of the female mind, I 
think the gentlemen were equally with the ladies desi- 
rous of its approach. At last it came, and sufficiently 
were we then diverted by various artificers finishing 
the platform for the expected ceremony. At five, an 
early hour, we breakfasted ; that of six brought the 
Guards, the foot rang'd on each side the platform, the 
Life and Grenadier Horse in a double row under our 
windows, making a most fine appearance, join'd to a 
view of the scaffoldings ; they were form'd over each 
other as the side-boxes at the theatre, lined as these 


with red or green cloth, and the company of the ist, 1761 
2nd, and 3rd rows were extremely brilliant, the day, 
a most glorious one, adding to their splendour. From 
this time we waited, but not with impatience, till twelve, 
for there was a diversity of objects to satisfy the most 
unbounded curiosity, nor could anything be conducted, 
as far as was within our sight, in better order ; even the 
very mob (tho* such amazing multitudes), seem*d that 
day to have forgot their native rusticity, and seem'd 
willing to be rul'd and kept in exact order. 'Twas in 
this interval of time I exercis'd my pencil and took 
the sketch you my friend and Mr. B. requested. . . . 

I now come to the procession itself. You know, 
my dear, how highly were my expectations raised, and 
that in imagination I'd form'd a sight most magnificent. 
To give you now my opinion of it, I need only say 
that the reality was even more superb than the idea. 
The coronation robes are a dress extremely becoming 
to the ladies. I wish I could pay the same compliment 
to their noble partners in the splendid group, but truth 
will not allow my silence on the occasion, knowing 
they made a far less illustrious appearance, tho' like- 
wise deck'd in all their pageant grandeur ; but each 
female shone indeed, in jewels, gold, silver, past de- 
scription fine; and the sun, by casting his all-piercing 
influence on these their dazzling ornaments, gave all 
a double lustre in each beholders eye; their head- 
dress was genteely fancied, their diamonds and 
coronets, with the hair in falling ringlets, so elegantly 
disposed, that most look'd pleasing, but there were 
eight or ten who must attract more notice from their 
native figure than it was in the power of all their 
glittering gewgaws to bestow. Pembroke * I thought 

^ Elizabeth, daughter of the second Duke of Marlborough. 


1761 first in this list of lovely ones. Richmond,^ Rocking- 
ham, Marchmont, and Harrington deserv'd not to be 
the last. But now, my friend, what am I to say of our 
new Queen? You desir d me to be particular, but shall 
we, who have yet only seen her in her coronation 
procession, pretend at the description of her person ? 
Justice permits it not, as she then, by all accounts, 
appear d to a disadvantage, and was hid (being not 
very majestic), by the number of her attendants ; in 
fine, the King's Charlotte is a woman by all accounts 
that will ever rank among the good, not the handsome, 
and with this her George, being the sensible man he 
is, must be more happy than if a beauteous idiot like 
a Coventry ^ was the partner of his crown. That she 
has no title to praises due to a fine form or face, every 
one agrees, but that she has every requisite to adorn 
an amiable mind is as generally allow'd ; and does she 
not then deserve to be Queen of England ? As to our 
King, he looked as a monarch ought, with dignity and 
sweetness almost peculiar to himself. 'Tis said that 
Quin ^ (who you know taught him to play), never acted 
Majesty better than he performed the reality. At first 
coming on the platform, as if astonish'd at sight of such 
amazing multitudes, he clasp'd his hands, and lifting up 
his eyes to heaven, stood for some moments in a pro- 
found silence, and I dare say (for great is his humility), 
he never had a meaner opinion of himself than at that 
instant, to think that all this bustle was for one poor 
mortal, an earthly king. When he proceeded, 'twas 
with a slow and exact pace, thro' increasing acclama- 

* Mary, daughter of the third Earl of Aylesbury. 

* Lady Coventry was one of the beautiful Miss Gunnings. 

' Quin, on being asked if he had taught the King to act, replied, "Yes, 
I taught the boy." 



tions, after stopping as if to give his subjects the plea- 1761 
sure of gazing on their monarch. One should hardly 
imagine, my dear, this a sight to excite tears even in 
the midst of royal pomp, splendour, and magnificence, 
but it did mine ; 'twas moving to see the excessive 
joy of the surrounding throng, when one knew the 
good young King deserved their every acclamation, 
not from being born to the crown he was going to 
receive, but by his own intrinsic merit. 

The Knights of the Bath made a sumptuous 
appearance ; their plumes, as they went, each carried 
in his hand, as did the peers and peeresses their 

The Herb maids I must not forget to mention ; 
they were first in the procession, viz., six very fine 
girls (they said young ladies of distinction, each giving 
twenty guineas for her place). Their dress was neatly 
elegant, white calico gowns and coats, blue and white 
stomachers, sleeve knots, lappets, no hoops, white 
shoes, white mittens turned with blue, and earrings 
and necklace of the last colour. A little basket on 
their left arm, and with their other hand they strewed 
the platform with flowers. When the procession had 
entered the Abbey, a great deal of the company left 
their seats in the scaffolding and met on the platform ; 
and I believe walked there for two or three hours, 
so that we there had the opportunity of seeing numbers 
of persons of distinction who were at the coronation. 

'Twas about this time we ourselves dined ; the 
gentlemen had before provided an elegant cold col- 
lation, with burgundy, champagne, claret, and other 
wines ; and because they were perfectly polite through- 
out that day, we were obliged to sit down first, while 
they waited behind our chairs (as Uncle Selby would 


1 76 1 have had Grandison on his wedding-day); indeed, I 
believe our beaux were the most polite of the day, for 
I've since heard of parties where gentlemen, as well 
as ladies, drew lots for seats, and if the front ones fell 
to the men, down sat they, sans cdrimonie, and left 
the ladies to see as well as they could over their 
unmannerly powder-puffed pates, while our heroes 
thought themselves happy (at least had the complai- 
sance to tell us so), with a third row. I fortunately, 
as one of the youngest, and (I suppose), one of the 
shortest (the only time I ever remember the diminu- 
tiveness of your Caroline stand her in any stead), had 
two undisputed titles, (tho* I claim'd them not), and 
was placed in the front seats. About six we were 
once more informed by the shouting populace of the 
approach of the procession at the return from the 
Abbey. Their Majesties had on their crowns, the 
nobility and knights their coronets and plumes, so 
that if the sun had shone out as when they went, the 
ceremony would now have been still more magnificent. 
We saw it pretty well, but those who were not in the 
Broad Sanctuary must have been greatly disappointed 
they were so late. The crew of the ** Charlotte " yacht 
were determin'd to be conspicuous at this return, for 
with their colours flying, and notic'd by the pink 
cockades, they in an instant made a lane thro' the 
multitude, and with loud huzzas attended their Queen's 
canopy from the door of the Abbey to that of the Hall. 
The procession once more over, our whole party with 
great ease got to our attending vehicles, and without 
any difficulty, except the exercise of our patience, 
reach'd home. Sometimes, indeed, we went not ten 
steps in half an hour's time, yet the way seem'd not 
tedious, for the streets were so illuminated. The 


Guards, who were all over the town, and the throng of 1761 
carriages were so amazing, as to keep up our attention. 

We however reached Mr. 's about ten. (I wrote 

to mama the instant of my safe arrival there, as I 
knew her so kindly apprehensive of any accident 
happening.) After my letter finished, to supper. 
Retired about one to our several apartments, and not 
much before that hour met at breakfast the next 

morn. I stay'd that day and the next at Mr. 's, 

and yesterday came down here. And now, my dear, 
my journal ends. You desir d a very particular account 
of the day's entertainment If I've been tedious, I 
hope you'll pardon me ; for tho' a dull journalist, you 
are sensible I must ever be your sincere and oblig'd 
friend, Caroline Girle. 

In the spring of 1762, Miss Girle in her diary 1762 
mentions a visit to see the seat of Mr. George Pitt,^ 
afterwards Lord Rivers, and called Strath fieldsaye,^ 
saying, " 'Tis an ancient white house, habitably good, 
the park, shrubbery, and grounds laid out prettily, and 
a menagery * exceedingly so, one of the first that was 
made in England, shows the pheasants, &c., to great 
advantage, being of a circular form with pens all round 
it. Colonel Pitt's* (his brother), house and park al- 
most join the above, both within a quarter of a mile of 
Mr. Baker's, which makes Heckfield a most delightful 

The next entry is August 5th, 1762. *' I was 

* First Baron Rivers. 

' Purchased by the nation in 181 5, and presented to the Duke of 
Wellington, held by the tenure of yearly a tricoloured flag presented on 
June 1 8th at Windsor. 

3 Old-fashioned name for aviary. 

* Sir William Augustus Pitt, K.B., of late seat of Lord Eversley. 


1762 married to Philip Lybbe Powys of Hardwick Hall, 

Before giving extracts from a letter of Mrs. Lybbe 
Powys describing her husband, &c., mention must be 
made of the family he belonged to. The Powys 
family derives its lineage through the Barons of 
Main-yn-Meifol of Powysland from lorwerth Goch. 
Lord of Mochnant in Powysland, younger son of 
Meredith, Prince of Powys. third son of Rhodri 
Mawr, King of Wales. Meredith Ap Bleddyn, 
Prince of Powys, bore arms thus : Shield argent, on 
which a lion rampant sable, armed and langued 
gules (called the Black Lion of Powys) ; these arms 
have been altered in Baron Lilford, now head of 
the family, to : Or, a lion's gamb erased, in bend 
dexter, between two cross crosslets fitchee, in bend 
sinister gules. Circ. 1250, William Powys was born, 
from him in direct descent, for which I must beg the 
reader to refer to the Powys pedigree, was Thomas 
Powys of Snitton, County Salop, born in 1558; he 
married Elizabeth, daughter of Richard Smyth of 
Credenhall, Hereford, by whom he had nine children, 
and was succeeded on his death in 1639 by Thomas, 
his eldest son, who was Serjeant-at-Law and a 
Bencher of Lincoln's Inn. This Thomas of Henley 
Hall, near Ludlow, married Anne, daughter of Sir 
Adam Littleton of Stoke Milbourne, Chief-Justice 
of Wales, a descendant of the celebrated author of 
the " Treatise on Tenure." By this lady he had six 
children, four sons and two daughters. His first wife 
died, he re-married Mary Cotes of Woodcote, Salop, 
by whom he had five sons and one daughter. By 
his first marriage the eldest son, Littleton, born 1647, 
a Bencher of Lincoln's Inn, received knighthood 


from William III., on being made Chief-Justice of 1762 
North Wales in 1692. In 1695 he became a Baron 
of the Exchequer, and in 1702 a Judge of the Kings 
Bench, which he resigned in 1726. He married Anne 
Carter of London, by whom he had no issue ; she 
died November 28, 1720. Sir Littleton, died March 
13, 1 73 1, aged eighty-one, and was buried at Bitter- 
ley, Salop ; having outlived his brothers and eldest 
nephew, he left his estate to his great-nephew Thomas 
Powys. Sir Littleton s next brother, Thomas, was also 
bred to the bar, was Solicitor-General in 1686, when 
he was knighted, the next year Attorney-General 
— was at the trial of the seven Bishops, at which 
his impartiality was greatly admired ; constituted one 
of the Judges of Queens Bench in 1713, removed 
from this in 1714. Sir Thomas purchased the manor 
of Lilford in Northamptonshire in 171 1 ; it had long 
been held by the family of Elmes, also resident at 
Bolney Court, Oxon ; the last survivor, William Elmes, 
sold it to a Mr. Adams, a money-scrivener, whose 
estates being afterwards in Chancery for his debts, 
Sir Thomas Powys purchased it Sir Thomas married 
twice, first to Sarah, daughter of Ambrose Holbech, 
Esq. of Mollington, Warwickshire, and by her had 
three sons and three daughters. Secondly, to Eliza- 
beth, daughter of Sir Philip Meadows of Bentley, 
Suffolk, by whom he had one surviving son, Philip. 
This Philip married Isabella Lybbe, sole child and 
heiress of Richard Lybbe, Esq. of Hardwick Hall, 
Oxon. The issue of this marriage was three sons, 
Philip Lybbe, born October 26, 1734, married to 
our heroine in 1762; Thomas, born 1736, in holy 
orders; and Richard John, born 1741, a captain in 
the Guards. ( Vide Lybbe Pedigree, and narrative of 


1762 family in account of Hardwick House.) I will now 
copy a letter of the bride to a Derbyshire friend 
describing her husband. 

Hardwick House, 

October 24^^, 1762. 

If my dear Bessy has still the friendship for her 
Caroline I used to flatter myself she had, the known 
superscription of this letter will, Tm certain, give her 
pleasure. To make excuses when silence has been 
so long is impossible, therefore I shall only say the 
change of scene Tve undergone since last I corre- 
sponded with my friend has engrossed my every 
thought. The newspapers, I imagine (tho* I have 
not), may have informed you that Tve dropped my 
former name for that of Powys, but Til give you a 
short history of myself for some months. Months 
past, in November, my poor mother s health wanting 
country air and exercise after the death and fatigue 
she experienced during the long illness of my dearest 
father, we took a house at Caversham, one mile from 
Reading and five from here, round which place you 
know formerly we had an agreeable set of acquaint- 
ances, which after some time we were happy to renew, 
and at an assembly (for assemblies, you know, are 
often productive of matrimony), Mr. Powys and I met, 
and soon after agreed — he to love, I to love and obey 
for life ; indeed, we had often heard of each other, and 
years ago the families were intimate, but the children 
of each then too young to think of those weighty 
matters. However, my mother approving in every 
point, for tho* of age, 1 think one is never at liberty 
to make those unhappy who gave us being, so the 
deed was done the 5th of last August ! My mother 
admires her son ; his father, the best of men, doats 


on her daughter. As to my Philip, as all new-married 1762 
ladies say, he is in every respect the man I wished, and 
I do really think I shall tell you the same seven years 
since. As many say who have known him from his 
infancy, he was never guilty of any vicq, and hardly 
of any fault. A rare husband, you 11 say, my Bessie ; 
but we will allow for the partiality of the character 
given by friends ; but his father has often told me 
his two eldest boys never gave him one moment's 
uneasiness by their conduct ; so you find IVe two 
brothers, two both younger than Mr. Powys — the 
eldest a clergyman (then twenty-six years old), who 
is in every respect what a clergyman and a gentleman 
ought to be, and has just been given a living by Mr. 
Freeman, of Fawley Court (Bucks), on a sweet spot 
thirteen miles from us,^ and two from his patrons. 
The different pursuits may serve to characterise the 
minds of each, as our young officer is what I fear too 
generally young men in the army are, gay, thought- 
less, and very handsome ; but what boy of fourteen 
having a commission in the Guards can be otherwise ? 
and one rather pities than blames this inconsiderate- 
ness, and as he has good sense and good temper, we 
hope he will soon be all we wish. My being first 
introduced to him was rather unpleasant, as he was 
but just came from abroad, and got to Hardwick by 
breakfast the morning after we were married ; but we 
soon became acquainted, and not to like him is quite 
impossible. We live at Hardwick (our father^ with 
us), in a large old house, about twelve rooms on a 
floor, with four staircases, the situation delightful, on 

^ Sambrook Freeman presented Fawley, Bucks, to T. Powys, October 
30, 1762. 

^ Mr. Philip Powys, £etat 62, had lost his wife May 1761. 



1762 the declivity of a hill, the most beautiful woods behind, 
and fine views of the Thames and rich meadows in 
front Hard wick Woods you may perhaps have heard 
of, as parties come so frequently to walk in them, and 
request to drink tea in a cottage ^ erected for that pur- 
pose in a delightful spot commanding a noble view of 
the Thames. My mother has taken a house in Read- 
ing, which adds to my happiness her being so near, 
and for which I am much obliged to her, as she has a 
house in London,* and loves the Metropolis so much 
better than her daughter, whose utmost ambition, you 
may remember, was to marry a gentleman who always 
resided in the country ; but this I dare say is generally 
the case where girls have not been debarred in early 
life from seeing in moderation all the diversions of 
that gay world. You'll want, I dare say, some de- 
scription of the person of my dear Phil. He s tall 
and thin. Tall men, one generally sees, marry little 
women ; as to myself, the compliments I am paid 
here by my poor neighbours is, * that I am a very little 
madam, indeed ! * But to proceed. My father and all 
the tenants tell me there never was so beautiful a 
boy as the young Squire ; but I think (fortunately), 
the small-pox has given him now a good, rough, manly 
face. H is age, twenty-eight, tolerably adapted to mine 
of twenty-four ; but 1 had rather he should have been 
past thirty. Our tempers — you are acquainted with 
mine — I flatter myself, will agree ; but I hardly ever 
saw one so excellent as his appears to be. And 
now, my dear, I think it is time to conclude this 
long epistle ; but mind you give me joy soon, and 
remember me to all Derbyshire and Yorkshire 

1 Called "Straw Hall." 
'^ In Lincoln's Inn Fields. 


acquaintances, and believe me, tho* a bad correspon- 1762 
dent, not a dilatory, but most sincere friend, 

Caroline Powys. 

A minature existing in the family of **my Phil'* 
represents him as a fine man, with good features, a 
high forehead, an aquiline nose, bright blue eyes ; but 
the complexion (a rosy one), shows signs of the rough- 
ness produced by the ravages of small-pox. Young 
ladies of the end of the nineteenth century are advised 
to read, and take to heart this letter, so descriptive 
of an honest, suitable, and loving courtship, so diffe- 
rent from the inculcations of Society novels of the 
fin de sthle. 

Besides an excellent husband, our Caroline had 
become the mistress of one of the most beautiful 
estates on the banks of the Thames. Hard wick 
House, near Whitchurch, Oxon, was, and is, of unique 
interest, equally to lovers of history as to admirers of 
scenery. Situated op a grassy slope leading down to 
the river, commanding fine views of th^ same, and 
yet elevated sufficiently to avoid the river fogs, backed 
by a steep hill, richly clad with exquisite hanging 
woods, which protect the house from the north and 
east winds, it possesses an unrivalled aspect, whilst 
its exterior presents a crowd of picturesque gables, 
surmounted by the quaint clock-tower, rising from 
mellowed red walls, adorned with stone mullioned 
windows — a most pleasing style of architecture. In- 
ternally its interesting and comfortable apartments 
combine to form a tout ensemble hard to beat. 

As to its ancient history, the Manor of Hard wick 
was amongst the list of twenty-eight lordships given 
by William the Conqueror to his favourite, Robert 


1762 D'Oyley, on his marriage with Aldith, the daughter of 
Wigod, Thane of Wallingford (the faithful friend and 
cupbearer to the Conqueror).^ Maud, the daughter of 
Robert D'Oyley and Aldith, carried the manor in 
marriage to Miles or Milo Crispin. Canon Slatter, 
in his ** History of Whitchurch," says Hard wick seems 
to have been a separate manor to Whitchurch, and 
states that Milo Crispin gave its tithes to the Abbey 
of Bee, in Normandy. He dying, his widow re- 
married Brien Fitzcount. She was supreme lady of 
the honour of Wallingford, in which Hard wick was 
included. Brien Fitzcount was an ardent supporter 
of the claims of the Empress Matilda to the English 
crown. By his wife, Maud, he had two sons, but 
they were both unhappily lepers. After the accession 
of Stephen, and the Treaty of Wallingford, signed in 
1 1 53, Brien Fitzcount took the Cross and went to the 
Holy Land. His wife, Maud, had already, circ. 1149, 
embraced a religious life in the Abbey of Bee, the 
poor leper sons being immured in the Priory of Ber- 
gavenny, provision being made to the monks for their 
maintenance. Robert D'Oyley the second, nephew 
of the original Robert, now held the honour of Wal- 
lingford. It is stated in a paper of Bransby Powys, 
grandson of our heroine, and who may be deemed 
the archaeologist of the family, that the family of De 
Herdewyke held Hardwick soon after the Norman 
Conquest. Canon Slatter derives the name Hardwick 
as Hard Spring, wick or wyke, used for wich arfd 
wych, being Celtic for a spring. This spring is named 
in the old Saxon boundaries of Whitchurch. As 
proper names were frequently derived from the place 
persons lived in, doubtless the De Herdewycks adopted 

» Vide "The House of D'Oyley," &c. 


theirs from their abode. They would hold the estate 1762 
from the Lord in capite (or supreme lord), under 
feudal tenure. In the Rotuli Hundredorum, com. 
Oxon, in Langtre, temp. Edward I., under the head of 
Whitchurch, we find Ralph de Anvers held two parts 
of a fee therein in capite, and that William de Herde- 
wycke held of him one virgate of land given in frank- 
marriage, and that Walter de Herdewycke held of 
him a half virgate of William de Herdewycke by the 
annual rent of 21s. Ralph de Anvers is mentioned 
in a Fine Roll of 13 Henry III., memb. 4, of the 
men of the honour of Wallingford, begging to be 
excused from going to war. **Who made a fine of 
IOCS, for the same to have his scutage of two knights* 
fees, &c., of the same honour." In an inquisition 
taken at the death of John de Herdewycke. in the 
18 Richard II., it states Hardwick was held "with 
demesne lands of the crown of the manor of Whit- 
church, in honour of Wallingford, for 1 1 is. per annum 
and suit of court for all services.'' At the death of 
Richard de Herdewycke in the reign of Henry VI II., 
Hardwick passed by the female line to the family of 
Crochefelde, and tenure was reaffirmed by inquisition 
of 12 Henry VIII. (152 1), on the death of William 
Crochefelde, therein styled ** cousin and heir to Richard 
de Hardewycke." In 1526 Hardwick was sold by 
** William Davy and Allys, his wife (late wife of 
William de Crochefelde), and Allys Preston " (cousin 
and heir of the said William Crochefelde), to Rich- 
ard Lybbe, originally of a Devonshire family from 
Tavistock, but then seated at Shinfield, in Berk- 
shire {vide Lybbe Pedigree). Richard Lybbe married 
Bridget, daughter of William Justice, of Reading. 
He died in 1527, and was buried at his other property 


1762 at Shinfield. He was succeeded by his son, another 
Richard Lybbe, who married Joanna, daughter of 
John Carter, of Checkendon, Oxon. This Richard 
was sewer to Queen Mary, and a stirrup of a curious 
shape, and large enough to hold two feet, said to be 
hers, is still possessed by the Lybbe Powys. It must 
have been during this Richard Lybbe s life that Queen 
Elizabeth paid a visit to Hard wick. 

A fine coloured and gilt monument exists in Whit- 
church Church to Richard Lybbe and his wife. He 
is represented, clad in armour, kneeling at a prie-dieu ; 
his wife opposite, in a rufif and quaint head-dress. A 
fine coat-of-arms and crest surmount the monument, 
the date of which is 1599. A tablet to their son, 
another Richard Lybbe,^ and his wife, Ann Blagrave, 
daughter of Anthony Blagrave, of Bulmarsh, Berks, 
has this quaint inscription : — '* To Richard Lybbe, of 
Hardwick, Esqre. and Anne Blagrave, united in sacred 
wedlock 50 years, are here againe made one by death. 
She yielded to the change Jan. 14. 1654, which he 
embracied July 14. 1658." 


" He, whose Renowne, for that completeth Man, 
Speaks louder, better things than Marble can ; 
She, whose Religious Deeds makes Hardwick's Fame 
Breathe as the Balme of Lybbe's Immortall Name, 
Are once more Joyned within this Peacefull Bed, 
Where Honour (not Arabian Gummes) is spred. 
Then grudge not Friends who next succeed 'em must, 
Y* are Happy, that shall mingle with such DusL" 

During this Mr. Lybbe s life occurred the dreadful 
period of the Civil Wars. In 1642, at its commence- 
ment, loans were levied by King Charles I. on his 

^ This Richard Lybbe was High-Sheriffof Oxon in 1640. 


faithful subjects. The following is a copy of the loan 1762 
levied on Richard Lybbe : — 

** 1642. Declaration to raise ;^ 100,000 from subjects 
in loans. ;^40 demanded from Mr. Lybbe on plate. 
Toucht plate at 5s., untoucht plate at 4s. 4d. per 
ounce. Seven days given to find and give to the 
High Sheriff (then Sir Thomas Chamberlayne), who 
is to pay back at Corpus Christi, Oxford." 

The King's signature is at the top of this paper, the 
rest in print, containing the signatures of the Earl of 
Bath, Lord Seymour, John Ashburnham, John Fetti- 
place. It was addressed "To our trusty and well- 
beloved Richard Lybbe." The King acknowledged 
the receipt of the loan, and Mr. Lybbe eventually 
endorsed the paper at the back, ** Was never paid back, 
nor expected it, but the document would have a valtu 
of its own'' But this was only the commencement of 
levies of money for the Royal cause ; besides the levies 
soon enforced by Parliament added to the latter a real 
case of plundering. 

In 1643 th^ Parliamentary troops from Reading 
sacked the house at Hardwick, ** taking awaie," as Mr. 
Lybbe piteously describes it, plate to the value of near 
;C200 (a list of which will be found at the end of this 
work), and other goods, including a fine bed with 
velvet hangings, to a total of ;C8oo. Mr. Lybbe 
meanwhile being obliged to conceal himself for fear 
of being taken prisoner. He, however, managed to 
save his best horses, and sent three for the King's 
service to Captain Tom Davis, who was in a troop 
under the Marquis of Hertford. Mr. Lybbe's son, 
Anthony, who had married in 1637 Mary, daughter 
and heiress of Leonard Keate, of Checkendon, Oxon, 
was in arms attending the King. Mr. Richard Lybbe 


1762 pleaded after this for remission of further loans to the 
King, stating, first, that he had been High Sheriff" for 
Oxon in 1640, by serving which office he had incurred 
debts to the amount of ;^300, which prevents his 
furnishing the King with more money ; secondly, he 
had already voluntarily paid ;^40 ; thirdly, driven 
from home by fear of rebels, who plundered him of 
;f 800 in money and plate ; fourthly, his revenue of 
;^6oo, ;^200 of which was settled in marriage on his 
son Anthony, and with what he had settled on other 
children, only jC^oo per annum left for himself. Par- 
liament enforced their payment, as in December 1644 
there is a receipt given him for £6, los. and six bushels 
of wheat for Hardwick, and ;^ii, i8s. for Whitchurch 
property. Twice he has to pay this year, twice in 
1645, and twice in 1646. No wonder, in a paper 
dated 8th March 1646, he says: ** Since which time, 
by this unnatural war, my house and study being 
plundered by soldyers, and among my many and 
great losses I lost my accounts, and many writings of 
great concernment." 

There is a tradition in the family that at the 
commencement of the war a large sum of money was 
buried for security, and every subsequent generation 
of descendant children have dug for the same, but with- 
out success ! Richard's son, Anthony, was attached 
by Parliament for his support of the King and his 
estate sequestrated, but in a paper dated 14th April 
1646 is discharged from sequestration. This was 
signed at Reading Abbey by Francis Pile, Tan fold 
Vachell (of Coley, Berks), Daniel and John Blagrave. 
The two latter, being his near relatives on his mother's 
side, were doubtless of great use in rebutting the 
charge ; but even as late as 1 649 he is again reported, 



but through Mr. Blagraves influence got off". This 1762 
was the year of the execution of the unfortunate King. 
In one of the memorandum books of the Lybbes is 
this entry : " King Charles the First was prisoner at 
Causham Lodge, ^ and bowled in Collin's End Green, 
19th July 1648, attended by a troop of horse of 
Colonel Rossiters." Collin's End^ is on the top of 
the hill at the back of Hard wick, and belonged to the 
Lybbe estate. There was a bowling-green attached 
to an inn there, afterwards called the ** King s Head." 
The original house is now Holly Copse, but there is 
an inn near bearing the same sign. 

Charles I. was at Caversham,^ from July 3rd to the 
22nd in 1647. Mr. Jesse, in his ** History of the 
Stewarts," says : "He (the King), frequently went to 
the bowling-green at Collin s End, Mr. Lybbe Powys' 
possession. There was a small building for shelter 
and refreshment near. Mr. Powys has a picture at 
Hardwick of the old lady who lived in the house near, 
who used to wait on the King when he visited the 
green." This picture is now at Holly Copse, near 
Collin's End, belonging to Mr. Lybbe Powys, as well 
as Queen Mary's stirrup.* The bowling-green is now 
an orchard. Lord Augustus FitzClarence, Rector of 
Maple-Durham, gave to this inn, years after, a portrait- 
sign of the King, copied from a Vandyck, under which 
the following lines by Mr. Jesse were inscribed : — 


Stop, traveller, stop ; in yonder peaceful glade 
His favourite game the royal martyr played ; 

^ Caversham Park, was then called " Lodge." 

' It belongs still to the Lybbe Powys, being made into a shooting-box. 
^ Then Lord Craven's property. 

* The stirrup is of iron heavily gilt, and would hold four ladies' feet ; 
eight holes at the bottom to let rain out. 


1762 Here, stripped of honours, children, freedom, rank. 

Drank from the bowl, and bowled for what he drank ; 
Sought in a cheerful glass his cares to drown. 
And changed his guinea ere he lost his crown." 

But to return to Anthony Lybbe. On the Restora- 
tion he borrowed, in J672, ;^500 in order to restore 
Hard wick, which had been lamentably injured during 
the war. In a paper of Bransby Powys he states of 
the house : ** Some portions are evidently of a very 
early period, and were probably existing in the time 
of Richard II., but the south front or river front was 
built by Anthony Lybbe after the restoration of Charles 
II., when the house appears to have required great 
repairs, in consequence of the dilapidations occasioned 
during the Civil War, the known loyalty of its owner 
having subjected it more than once to the pillage 
of the Parliamentary forces." For the more minute 
details of these and subsequent repairs, the reader 
must turn to a note at the end of this book. The 
debt on the house was discharged March 24, 1676, 
two years after Anthony's death, by his son, another 
Richard Lybbe. This Richard married first Sophia, 
daughter of Sir Thomas Tipping;^ she died in 1682, 
and he re-married Mary, daughter of Sir William Hill, 
who died the year after. Mr. Lybbe founded, in 17 14, 
the almshouses for old men at Goring, Oxon, where 
he had property. He died the year after, and was 
succeeded by his son, another Richard, who in 171 2 
was High Sheriff for Oxon, and the same year married 
Isabella, daughter of Sir William Twysden of Roydon 
Hall, Kent. From this union was born Isabella, sole 

^ Made baronet by William III. Lady Tipping was sister of and 
co-heiress with Dame Alice Lisle of Moyles Court, Hants, who was 
condemned to be beheaded by the infamous Judge Jeffreys for sheltering 
two fugitives from Sedgemoor. See note at end of book. 


child and heiress, who on December 19, 1730, married 1762 
Philip Powys, only surviving son of Sir Thomas 
Powis of Lilford, by his second marriage with Eliza- 
beth, daughter of Sir Philip Meadows^ of Bentley 
Hall, Suffolk, thus bringing to her husband Hardwick. 
From this union were born three sons, Philip Lybbe, 
born October 26, 1734, the husband of our heroine; 
Thomas, born September 26, 1736, afterwards Dean 
of Canterbury ; and Richard John, born August 1741. 
subsequently captain in the Guards ; and one daughter, 
Elizabeth, who died in infancy. 

To return to a description of Hardwick House. 
The general architecture is Tudor, though, as men- 
tioned before, a portion is far older, supposed to be of 
Richard II. 's reign. Time has mellowed the bricks 
it is built of into a colour that fascinates the artist s 
eye ; the windows picked out with stone, a few mo- 
dernised, but the majority retaining their original 
shape. The south front of the house has been extended 
considerably by the present lessee, Mr. C. Day Rose, 
but very judiciously ; he has also built new stables, a 
covered tennis-court, cottages, &c., but the modem 
portion of the house I do not purpose to describe. At 
the end of this book will be found a note (No. 2) of 
all the dates known of alterations ; but as these details 
are less interesting to the general reader than the 
family, I do not insert them here. On the south side 
of the house runs a broad terrace, beneath this a flower- 
garden on a gradual slope to the river Thames, with 
fine trees scattered around — notably a fine cedar on 
the east side, and opposite Queen Elizabeth's bed- 
chamber a large mass of clipped yew, through which 

* Some Peerages spell it " Medows," but in Sir Thomas Powys' epi- 
taph it is Meadowes. See note at end of book. 


1762 an arch is cut, forming a quaint object. The entrance 
is on the north side of the house, under the clock- 
tower, but another door has been made close by. On 
this side the ground rises in a steep grassy slope for a 
great height ; on either side this vista hang the most 
exquisite woods, forming a complete shelter from the 
north and east. On the top of the slope is a fine 
natural terrace, from which is a superb view. Here 
stands a cottage called ** Straw Hall," once a favourite 
resort of picnic parties, but since game has become 
more strictly preserved is closed to the public. Written 
over "Straw Hall," in 1756, is a verse by Thomas 
Powys, brother of Philip, and afterwards Dean of 
Canterbury, who had a great turn for rhyming :— 

" Within this cot no polished marble shines, 
Nor the rich product of Arabian mines ; 
The glare of splendour and the toys of state, 
Resigned, unenvied, to the proud and great ; 
Whilst here reclined, those nobler scenes you view 
Which Nature's bold, unguided pencil drew." 

** Straw Hall " has always been a favourite resort of 
the family, and innumerable are the mentions of teas 
held there in Mrs. Powys' journals. Near the other 
end of the terrace in a grotto lies buried ** Muff," long 
the beloved dog of the Dean's, who erected this epi- 
taph on a stone : — 

** From insults rude thy poor remains to save. 
Thus faithful Muflf thy master makes thy grave." 

At the west end of the terrace is a cottage dis- 
guised by a church-like gable called " The Baulk." 

Returned to the house, the spectator enters from 
the porch a square panelled hall, hung with many 
family portraits and furnished with old oak ; to the 


left of this is a drawing-room. A very fine room used 1762 
as a dining-room is beyond the Queen Elizabeth's 
staircase. The wainscoting of the walls, most ele- 
gant in design, a very handsome plaster ceiling, and 
in the mantelpiece is a stucco head, said to be a like- 
ness of King Alfred. 

One of the principal staircases, which is shut off 
from the hall, is extremely handsome, the balustrades 
all oak richly carved, the plaster ceiling most ex- 
quisitely modelled. This staircase leads to Queen 
Elizabeth's bed-chamber, now used as a drawing-room, 
and both staircase and room were decorated for the 
visit paid by the Queen to Mr. Lybbe. Queen Eliza- 
beth's room looks east, is very large, with a splendid 
oriel window at east end. The whole of it is panelled 
with most richly carved oak, the details of which 
would take too much room to describe. The door 
and its case are remarkably ornate. Over the fire- 
place, which has a carved back and contains very 
ancient dog-irons, is a most curious over-mantel, which 
represents Abraham offering Isaac as a sacrifice. An 
angel is seizing his arm to prevent this. In niches 
at the side are large figures of Faith, Hope, Justice, 
and Charity. Above these are the Lybbe arms. But 
what makes this very noteworthy is that the whole is 
carved in chalk, which retains its original sharpness 
of outline in a remarkable manner, and is, I believe, 
in these days a lost art. 

The plaster ceiling is elaborately modelled, and 
in the centre, at intervals, are three portrait medallion 
heads of Queen Elizabeth. Four other heads in 
medallions are placed at the corners, of the following 
incongruous personages, viz., Joshua (dux), Jeroboam, 
Fama, and Julius Caesar, all fully inscribed, so that no 


1762 doubt may exist as to their personalities, though why 
they are selected, with the exception of Fama, is a 
mystery. Some years ago, unfortunately, the bed- 
stead was disposed of, but a pencil-drawing of it exists 
in one of Bransby Powys* big family scrap-books, and 
represents a huge handsome carved four-poster, in 
which we can imagine the Virgin Queen reposing 
under her own medallion portraits. 

The bedrooms are numerous and comfortable, 
retaining old-fashioned names, such as the **blue 
room," ** mahogany room," &c., &c., the "powder 
room," a very essential apartment when people loaded 
their head or wigs with powder. This is now made 
into a dressing-room. There are several staircases, 
many sitting-rooms, and long corridors filled with 
pictures, the principal of which are Sir W. and 
Lady Twysden, by Sir Peter Lely, a.d. 1693. He 
is represented in armour. Their daughter married 
Richard Lybbe {vide Pedigree). Sir Littleton Powys, 
in a black cap, red furred gown, and white upper 
cloak; also his brother Sir Thomas, by Sir Godfrey 
Kneller ; Sir Philip Meadows, father of the second 
Lady T. Powys, 1717, by Dahl ; three-quarter length 
portraits of Philip Powys and his wife Isabella, by 
Davenport, and many others, amongst them Mr. 
and Mrs. Girle, by Vanderbanck, Caroline Powys' 
parents. Mrs. Girle has a sweet round rosy face, 
with an abundance of soft brown hair, of small stature, 
according to her picture. The only picture of our 
heroine is a miniature painted by Spornberg at Bath 
in 1807, when she was sixty-nine. In this a curious 
sort of turban-cap conceals all her head, with the 
exception of a fringe of hair on the forehead. She 
has pleasant eyes, a well-shaped nose, and a rather 


prominent chin, denoting firmness of character. We 1762 
know from her own showing, our Caroline was dubbed 
**a very little Madam," and in later life, from her 
diary, that she was rather embonpoint. 

One curious discovery in her time must be noticed. 
In a recess in the corridor leading to the breakfast- 
room was found a bronze jug, inscribed " Edward, 
Rex Anglia." It is 7J inches high, 5I at base, with a 
straight handle of 4 inches. It holds exactly a gallon 
of wine. This was considered by General Conway 
and Lord Frederick Campbell, connoisseurs in anti- 
quities, to be a standard measure of the reign of one 
of the Edwards. 

To return to Caroline Powys* diary. Septem- 
ber 7, 1762, is the next entry of a first visit to a 
place and people destined henceforth to be intimate 

** We went to see Park Place,^ the seat of General 
Conway, and one of the most capital situations in 
England. The house stands agreeably, but is too 
indifferent for the surrounding grounds. They have 
a pretty cottage near the river, which the General 
took the idea of from * Straw Hall,' in Hard wick 
Woods." A note added in later years: '' N.B. — 
In July 1793 Gen'l Conway alter'd the house, and 
whiten'd it, and 'tis now an exceeding good one." 

As we shall come to frequent mention of General 
Conway, a short sketch must be here given of him. 
Henry Seymour Conway, the second son of the first 
Lord Conway, was born in 1720. Educated at Eton, 
he entered the army ; was aide-de-camp to the Duke 
of Cumberland at the battle of Dettingen ; present 
at those of Laffeld and Fontenoy ; at the latter was 

* Park Place, Henley-on-Thames, now the seat of Mrs. Noble. 


1762 taken prisoner. About 1747 he married Caroline, 
daughter of John Campbell, fourth Duke of Argyll 
and widow of Charles Bruce, Earl of Aylesbury. By 
her first husband Lady Aylesbury (who retained her 
first married name after marrying General Conway), 
had one daughter, married to the Duke of Richmond;^ 
by her second marriage she had another daughter, 
Anne,* born in 1745, married to the Honourable John 
Damer. General Conway bought Park Place after 
the death of Frederick, Prince of Wales, in 1752, who 
had been its previous owner. The General com- 
manded the British forces in Germany in 1761. In 
1765 he was dismissed for persistent resistance of war 
and rejection of corruption. He opposed vigorously 
in Parliament (which he now entered), the taxation 
of America, &c. ; became Secretary of State ; in 1768 
returned to his military profession; in 1782 became 
Field - Marshal, and in 1785 Governor of Jersey. 
General Conway and his wife were devoted to Park 
Place, and from the commencement of their owner- 
ship endeavoured in every way to improve and adorn 
a spot so romantically beautiful. The General was 
first cousin on the maternal side to Horace Walpole, 
who was also his dearest friend. Walpole took deep 
interest in all the improvements at Park Place, and 
eventually made his young cousin, Anne Damer, his 
heiress. Lady Aylesbury was remarkable for her 
beauty, as well as her daughter, the Duchess of 
Richmond. Horace Walpole mentions the exquisite 
picture she and this daughter made, sitting in a seat 
shaped like a shell at Strawberry Hill, and fondly 
termed the Campbells ** huckaback beauties," a homely 

^ Charles, third Duke of Richmond. 
'^ See note at end of book. 


term, but meaning that they were beautiful always, 1762 
and for daily use, owing nothing to fictitious charms. 

Mrs. Powys' first child, Caroline, was born June 1763 
i4» 1763. On the 14th July the same year, **My 
brother (-in-law), Captain Richard John Powys, married 
to the daughter of General Bedford ; they met at 
Bristol, both so ill of consumption that 'twas thought 
neither could recover, but in a few weeks they went 
off to Scotland." 

A Gretna Green match ! 

In March 1764, Mrs. Powys lost her little Caro- 1764 
line, and in April she, her husband, and father-in-law 
went to Bath for a little tour to recover her spirits.^ 

** September 6th, 1764. — Died in childbed, and like- 
wise the infant, my sister, Richard Powys, just sixteen 
years of age, a most amiable young creature in mind 
and person, the latter particularly elegantly pretty. 
The General and Mrs. Bedford had been reconcil'd 
from almost the first, and lived with them at the time 
of her death.'* 

** April 2^th. — Our boy Philip Lybbe born ! " 1765 

''August i6th, 1766. — We all set out on an ex- 1766 
cursion for a day or two, and went first to Hedsor, 
Lord Boston's, near Clifden ; but I think a still finer 
situation, a very indifferent very old house, ^ but stands 
on such an eminence as commands a beautiful view 
of the Thames and fine country round that spot. We 
din'd at March's, and in the evening went by water 
to drink tea at Monkey Island, belonging to the Duke 

^ She never forgot her first child, but as each year came round noted 
its birth and death in her diary. 
' New house built in 1778. 



1766 of Marlborough.^ On this little island are two build- 
ings, richly decorated on the inside. We went back 
to Maidenhead Bridge, and next morning went to 
Windsor. First we went to the Duke's Lodge* in 
Windsor Great Park (which is twenty miles round) ; 
the avenue leading to the lodge is three miles and a 
half long, a perfectly straight line ; when at the upper 
end, the castle at the other makes a noble point of 
view. The late Duke, son of George II., built to it 
a number of new rooms, and began a pretty chapel. 
. . . The late owner (the Duke of Cumberland), seem'd 
regretted as his merit deserved ; for, tho* a year after 
his death, every domestic he was mentioned by paid 
the grateful tribute of tears to his beloved memory. 
Having seen the house, we went to the Tower, call'd 
Shrubs Hill. The plantations the Duke made hereon 
a soil so barren appear wonderful ; but firs will grow 
almost anywhere. The building is pretty, command- 
ing a most extensive prospect. In the principal room 
is a chandelier of Chelsea china, the first of that 
manufacture, and cost ;^500. From hence we went 
to the Chinese Island, on which is a small house quite 
in the taste of that nation, the outside of which is 
white tiles set in red lead, decorated with bells and 
Chinese ornaments. You approach the building by a 
Chinese bridge, and in a very hot day, as that was, 
the whole look'd cool and pleasing. The inside con- 
sists of two state rooms, a drawing-room, and bed- 
chamber, in miniature each, but corresponds with the 
outside appearance ; the chamber hung with painted 
satin, the couch-bed in the recess the same ; in the 
drawing-room was a sort of Dresden tea-china, most 

^ Built by third Duke of Marlborough. 
' Duke of Cumberland. 


curious indeed, every piece a different landscape, 1766 
painted inimitably ; in short, the whole of the little 
spot is well worth seeing. We dined at Windsor, 
and then went to the Castle, where, I think, there is 
but little worthy one's observation ; the furniture is 
old and dirty, most of the best pictures removed 
to the Queen s palace,^ and the whole kept so very 
un-neat that it hurts one to see almost the only place 
in England worthy to be styled our Kings Palace 
so totally neglected.^ The fine carving of Grindeline 
Gibbons in St. Georges Chapel is still left there. 
The view from the terrace, I know, is generally ad- 
mir'd, but tho' I may show my want of taste, I must 
own it never strikes me with the idea of beautiful. 
Shenstone has a pretty idea of distinguishing between 
landscape and prospect, but says mere extent, is 
what the vulgar admire. 

**We lay again at Maidenhead Bridge, and the 
next morn went to see Lady Orkney s at Taplow,* 
where is a terrace more, I fancy, adapted to the 
word landscape, as that of Windsor is to prospect ; 
'tis two miles and a half in length, a hanging wood 
below you ; all the way the Thames runs along the 
bottom ; the country all round highly picturesque ; 
a Gothic root-house which hangs pendant over the 
river is exceedingly pretty ; the building is like 
'Straw Hair in our woods, only the inside is 
Gothic paper resembling stucco ; the upper part of 
the windows being painted glass gives a pleasing 

" October 1766. — Went to dine at Sir John Cope s, 

* Buckingham House, bought by George III. in 1761, and given to 
the Queen. 

» Very different in 1899. 

' Taplow Court, now H. Gren^elPs, Esq. 


1766 Bramshill, in Hampshire, a most immense pile of 
building now, tho* I think he told us hardly the 
half of what was erected first by the Lord de la 
Zouch in the reign of Elizabeth.^ The range of 
apartments are so vastly spacious that one generally 
sees Sir John toward the winter put on his hat to 

1767 go from one room to another." 

''March 2ird, 1767. — Went to see what is rather 
a difficulty to see at all, the Queen's Palace.^ The 
hall and staircase are particularly pleasing ; the whole 
of the ground-floor is for the King, whose apart- 
ments are fitted up rather neatly elegant than pro- 
fusely ornamental. The library consists of three 
rooms, two oblong and an octagon. The books are 
said to be the best collection anywhere to be met 
with. The Queen's apartments are ornamented, as 
one expects a Queen's should be, with curiosities 
from every nation that can deserve her notice. The 
most capital pictures, the finest Dresden and other 
china, cabinets of more minute curiosities. Among 
the pictures let me note the famed cartoons from 
Hampton Court, and a number of small and beautiful 
pictures ; one room panell'd with the finest Japan. 
The floors are all inlaid in a most expensive manner, 
and tho' but in March, every room was full of roses, 
carnations, hyacinths, &c., dispersed in the prettiest 
manner imaginable in jars and different flower-pots on 
stands. On her toilet, besides the gilt plate, innumer- 
able knick-knacks. Round the dressing-room, let into 
the crimson damask hangings in a manner uncommonly 
elegant, are frames of fine impressions, miniatures, 
&c., &c. It being at that time the coldest weather 
possible, we were amazed to find so large a house 

^ James the First. ' Buckingham Palace. 


so warm, but fires, it seems, are kept the whole day, 1767 
even in the closets, and to prevent accidents to fur- 
niture so costly from the neglect of the attendance, 
there is in every chimney a lacquered wire fireboard, 
the cleverest contrivance that can be imagined, as 
even the smallest spark cannot fly through them, 
while you have the heat, and they are really orna- 
mental. By the Queen's bed was an elegant case 
with twenty-five watches, all highly adorn'd with 

''May 12M, 1767. — Went to see the so-much- 
talk'd-of church built by Lord Le Despencer,^ near 
his own seat at West Wycombe, Bucks ; but as Mr. 
Young in his six weeks tour has so well described 
this place, I shall set it down in his words as follows : 
* On the summit of a hill which overlooks the whole 
country, his Lordship has erected a church, and ad- 
joining to it a mausoleum, the latter a six-angled 
open wall of flints, with stone ornaments and row 
of Tuscan pillars ; on the inside runs a quarter stone 
around it, two of the six divisions are occupied with 
dedications to the late Earl of Westmoreland and 
Lord Melcomb. There is not much to recommend 
in the taste of this building ; it is either unfinished, 
or the idea very incomplete, and situation such as 
to appear from many points of view to be one build- 
ing with the church, which has a bad effect ; and 
had even St. Paul been to preach here, he must 
have furnished the neighbours with more than mortal 
legs to have become his auditors, for it was with 

^ Sir Francis Dashwood, afterwards Lord Le Despencer, founder 
of the mock Monks of St Francis at Medmenham Abbey. Their 
proceedings are chronicled in Chryscdy or The Adventures of a Guinea, 
For real characters in this book vide note. 


1767 the utmost difficulty I could gain the top. I consider 
this church, therefore, much in the same style as 
Beatrice did Don Pedro for a husband, **fit only for 
festivals, with another for common use, too elevated, 
for every day."* I agree with Mr. Young that the 
difficulty of this ascent must be dreadful on the 
ancient and decrepid parishioners. The inside of the 
church is striking as a fine concert or ball room, 'tis 
indeed an Egyptian hall, and certainly gives one 
not the least idea of a place sacred to religious 
worship, having no pews or pulpit, but two sort of 
ornamented writing - desks for the clergyman and 
clerk, and the font is shown as an elegant toy ; the 
congregation sits each side on rows of forms, as at 
an assembly. The house and grounds of this noble- 
man are, I think, indifferent." 

This extraordinary church was built by Lord Le 
Despencer in 1763, just after the break up of the 
sham Franciscan Brotherhood at Medmenham, of 
whose doings the least said the better. A . full de- 
scription of this church, too long to insert here, will 
be found in Chambers' ** Book of Days." See note 
at end of this book. 

''July 28M, 1767. — Went to breakfast with Mr. 
Clayton at Harleyford,^ near Marlow, in Buckingham- 
shire, to see his place, justly esteemed one of the 
prettiest of that neighbourhood. He has lately built 
an elegant brick house, less, but after the model of 
Lord Harcourt's ; his library one of the most pleas- 
ing rooms I was ever in, the eating-room good, but 
I think the entrance, drawing-room, and apartments 
above stairs on too contracted a plan. The situation 
is beautiful (except one meadow before the eating- 

* Built in 1715 by the first Baronet, Sir William Clayton. 


room, from which I should imagine the rushes might 1767 
easily be removed), the approach to the house un- 
commonly pleasing, and the whole of the offices so 
contriv'd in a pit, as to be perfectly invisible — a great 
addition that to the look of any place, and certainly 
adds infinitely to the neatness so conspicuous round 

''September i6th, 1767. — We went to meet many 
families at a turtle-feast at Colonel Vansittart s at 
Shottesbrook,^ Berks, a good old house, a most not- 
able collection of pictures, but the place and countr)^ 
round it exceedingly dreary. Mr. Vansittart is reckoned 
to have the best fruit and kitchen garden, better 
arranged than most others." 

January 1768, Captain Richard Powys, whose 1768 
Gretna Green marriage has been before noted, tho' 
in very precarious health, re-married a Miss Gibson, 
grand-daughter to the Bishop of London. He did 
not long survive his second marriage, dying on Feb- 
ruary the 7th. Mrs. Powys says: "There could not 
be a young man of a more amiable, sweeter dispo- 
sition, tho' in the very early part of life had been gay 
and extravagant to a degree ; but how readily was 
that to be pardoned in a youth exceedingly handsome, 
in the Guards at fourteen years of age, keeping com- 
pany with persons of the highest rank." He was 
only twenty-six when he died. Bransby Powys says 
in one of his journals of his uncle Richard : ** A large 
bundle of papers bearing the unvarnished title * Dick's 
Debts ' exists at Hard wick, forming perhaps the most 
complete catalogue of the expenses of a dandy of the 
court of George II., consisting chiefly of swords, 

* A most ancient manor, held by Alward the goldsmith, temp. William 
Rufus. Church dates from 1337. 


1768 buckles, lace, Valenciennes and point d'Espagne, gold 
and amber-headed canes, tavern bills, and chair hire!" 
The chairs would be Sedan chairs. 

On Michaelmas Day 1768, Mrs. Powys' second 
son, Thomas, was born. In the same year occurs : 
" Master Pratt, only son of the Lord Chancellor, 
came to my brother Powys at Fawley." This boy 
was John Jeffreys, afterwards second Earl, and first 
Marquis Camden. Bom in 1759, he was conse- 
quently nine years old when he became pupil of the 
Rev. Thomas Powys, Rector of Fawley, and the 
next year the Lord Chancellor Camden^ made Mr. 
Powys a Prebendary of Hereford and Bristol, whilst 
the King presented him to the living of Silchester, 

1769 On July 13, 1769, Mrs. Powys says: **We went 
with a large party to see Bulstrode, the seat of the 
Duchess-Dowager of Portland, in Buckinghamshire. 
This lady was daughter of Harley,^ Lord Oxford, 
mentioned in the late published letter of Swift. This 
place is well worth seeing, a most capital collection* 
of pictures, numberless other curiosities, and works 
of taste in which the Duchess has displayed her well- 
known ingenuity. Among the pictures most famed 
are a Holy Family as large as life, by Raphael ; 
*The Building of Antwerp,* by four eminent hands, 
from Sir Luke Shaub's collection. The hall is sur- 
rounded by very large pieces of every kind of beast, 
by Snyders. The menagerie, I had heard, was the 
finest in England, but in that I was disappointed, as 

* Charles Pratt, an eminent lawyer, born 17 13. 

^ Margaret Cavendish Harley, only child of Edward, second Earl of 
Oxford ; Prior's " My noble, lovely, little Peggy." 

' When sold in 1786, the collection took thirty-seven days to sell. 



the spot is by no means calculated to show off the 1769 
many beautiful birds it contains, of which there was 
great variety, as a curassoa, goon, crown-bird, stork, 
black and red game, bustards, red-legg d partridges, 
silver, gold, pied pheasants, one, what is reckoned ex- 
ceedingly curious, the peacock-pheasant. The aviary, 
too, is a most beautiful collection of smaller birds — 
tumblers, waxbills, yellow and bloom paraquets, Java 
sparrows, Loretta blue birds, Virginia nightingales, 
and two widow-birds, or, as Edward calls them, ' red- 
breasted long-twit'd finches.' Besides all above men- 
tioned, her Grace is exceedingly fond of garden- 
ing, is a very learned botanist, and has every English 
plant in a separate garden by themselves. Upon 
the whole, I never was more entertained than at Bul- 

**On our return we went to see Mr. Wallers^ at 
Beaconsfield. Fine gloomy garden quite in the old 
style, but I never saw anywhere so well-grown a 
collection of firs and every sort of evergreens as at 
this seat of our famed poet. Waller. 

**This summer we spent a week at Shotover, in 
Oxon, the seat of Mr. Schutz, whose father. Baron 
Schutz, came over into England with George II. It 
is within four miles of Oxford, a magnificent place, 
an elegant stone house, which stands in the centre 
of very fine gardens, something in the style of Mr. 
Waller's ; straight avenues terminated by obelisks, 
temples, porticoes, &c. ; it has an air of grandeur. 
Mr. Schutz is now every year making openings to 
an extensive country before altogether excluded. 
While at Shotover we visited at Lord Harcourt's.^ 
An exceedingly fine situation, and reckoned a good 

* Hall Bam. ' Nuneham Park. 


1769 house; but though lately built, and of stone, coming 
from Shotover made it, I imagine, not to appear so 
good a one as 'tis generally esteemed. Lord Har- 
court had just finished a pretty church,^ which he 
rebuilt near his own house." 

Mrs. Girle this year presented her daughter with 
a new coach, made by Poole of Longacre. 

1770 January 1770, Lord Camden resigned the seals. 
This year Mrs. Powys visits her aunt Mrs. Mount 
at Clapham, and with her, visits Hampton Court 
Palace, which she pronounces neater kept than 
Windsor Castle, a better collection of pictures, but 
considers the situation dull ; but she is enraptured 
with a visit to Richmond Hill. 

She mentions in May being at the Exhibitions 
of pictures in London. **The Royal Academy is 
always stil'd the only one worth seeing, at least 'tis 
unfashionable to say you had been to any other; 
but while Elmer excels so in dead game, still life, 
and droll portraits, and Stubbs in animals and trees, 
I must own I've pleasure in seeing their performance, 
tho' not exhibited at the Royal Academy." 

She also visits the model of the city of Paris, 
" a most ingenious piece of workmanship. We were 
taken to see the wedding-chair of Lady Craven,^ then 
exhibited as curious, the first of the kind, being of 
red morocco leather, richly ornamented with silver, 
lined with white satin, fringed and tassel'd ; it cost 
;^250. Seems too superb to meet the inclemency of 
the weather, but 'twas only meant as a Court chair, 
and tho' exceeding elegant, I question if, when occu- 

^ All Saints, built 1764. 

* Elizabeth, daughter of the fourth Earl of Berkeley, wife of the sixth 
Baron Craven ; married subsequently the Margrave of Anspach. 


pied by its still more elegant mistress, it takes the 1770 
eye for more than an instant from her beautiful form. 

" Took some friends to see Sir Harry Englefield's ^ 
and Mr. Birts, two places in Berks stiFd pretty; the 
former I think little deserving the epitaph, the latter a 
good house and grounds." 

^'July 13, 177 1. — Being at my brother Powys' 1771 
at Fawley, one I suppose of the most elegant par- 
sonages in England, commanding from a very good 
house ^ a prospect uncommonly noble, he took us 
to Mr. MichelFs new house,' which makes so pretty 
an object from his own place. The house was not 
finish'd, stands in a paddock, rises from the river on 
a fine knoll commanding a view which must charm 
every eye. The hall, and below-stairs, if we could 
then judge, seem too minute, the plan of the bed- 
chambers exceedingly convenient and pleasing, kit- 
chen offices are all very clever. About a mile from 
the house, through a sweet wood, you mount a vast 
eminence which brings you to an exact Chinese house 
caird Rose Hill,* from being built in the centre of a 
shrubbery of roses, honeysuckles, &c. The situation 
of this commands what some call a finer prospect than 
the other house, but the variety of each is pleasing. 
A poor woman lives here, and 'tis a sweet summer 
tea-drinking place inside and out, in the true Chinese 

1 Englefield House, a most ancient manor. 

' Built by Rev. John Stevens, circ 1740 ; two vicars before Mr. 
Powys. Old vicarage made into stables. Mr. Powys was presented 
in 1762. 

' Culham Court, Berks. 

* Rose Hill, built for General Hart in Chinese style. 




Taken from three letters to Mrs. Wheatley, cousin to Mrs. Powys. 

Court of Hill, Worcestershire, 
Aug. 28M, 177 1. 

Your kind partiality to your friend when last at 

Hardwick, my dear Margaretta, in professing yourself 

entertained by journals of my former excursions, makes 

me suppose, vainly imagine, I may give you pleasure 

by a concise account of our present journey into 

Shropshire. Mr. Powys, myself, and our eldest boy^ 

set out on Monday the 26th, went in our carriage 

to Benson,* from thence in post-chaises as more 

expeditious than coach or phaeton, as we purposed 

laying at Worcester the first night, tho' eighty miles 

from Hardwick. From Benson we went to Oxford. 

As to this city, so strikingly noble, I shall say nothing, 

as I know you have seen it. Blenheim, too, we now 

pass'd, both of us having often seen that heavy pile 

of Vanbrugh's, tho* we talk of reviewing it on our 

return, to see the fam'd Brown s so-much-talk'd-of 

improvements in the gardens. Near Huston, on the 

right, you see a seat of Lord Shrewsbury's.^ Seems 

not remarkable, except for an avenue of clumps, the 

first trees so planted in England. The roads here 

are turnpike, but not good, the country unpleasing, 

stone wall hedges, and the heaps of same materials 

lie so scattered about for mending as gives a most 

litter d appearance ; but from Chapel House* to Broad- 

^ Then six years old. 

* Bensington, Oxon. 

' Heythrop Park, now Albert Brasse/s, Esq. 

* A celebrated coaching inn. 


way all is still worse. I never saw a country wear 1771 
a more melancholy aspect, and yet were we highly 
entertained by a " Turkish Spy." Don't you recol- 
lect charging me to read it soon. I took the first 
moment to comply with your request. 'Tis amazing 
clever. The'going down Broadway Hill is still formid- 
able, but I remember it horrid. They have just laid 
out ;^200 on it, and by dragging we got safe to the 
bottom. At Broadway* dined. Our next stage to 
Pershore, through the Vale of Evesham, so famed of 
old for fine grain of all kinds. Our last stage that 
night was by moonlight. Got to Worcester about 
nine, ourselves nor little companion in the least 
fatigued, tho' a long journey for a boy of six years old, 
but novelties took up his attention, and the day pass'd 
agreeably even without sleep. 

Worcester city in some parts well built, fine 
assembly-room, excellent town -hall, Cathedral in- 
different, and a large infirmary now building. As to 
its china manufacture, 'tis more worth seeing than 
anything I hardly ever did see. They employ 160 
persons, a vast number of them very little boys. 
There are eleven different rooms, in which the em- 
ployment is as follows : First room, a mill for 
grinding the composition to make the clay ; second, 
the flat cakes of clay drying in ovens ; third, the 
cakes work'd up like a paste, and form'd by the 
eye only into cups, mugs, basons, tea-pots, their 
ingenuity and quickness at this appears like magic ; 
fourth, making the things exactly by moulds all 
to one size, but they are seldom different, so nice 
is their eye in forming; fifth, paring and chipping 
coffee-cups and saucers in moulds, a boy turning the 

^ 1086 feet high. * Worcestershire. 


1 77 1 wheel for each workman; sixth, making the little 
roses, handles, twists, and flowers one sees on the 
china fruit-baskets, all these stuck on with a kind of 
paste ; seventh, scalloping saucers, &c., with a pen- 
knife while the composition is pliable, and in this room 
they make the china ornamental figures ; these are done 
in moulds, separate moulds for the limbs, and stuck 
on as above ; eighth, the heat of this eighth room was 
hardly bearable, filled with immense ovens for baking 
the china, which is put in a sort of high sieves about six 
feet long ; ninth, glazing the china, by dipping it into 
large tubs of liquor, and shaking it as dry as they can ; 
tenth, some sorting the china for painting, others 
smoothing the bottom by grinding ; eleventh, painting 
the china in the different patterns. I rather wonder *d 
they did not in one room exhibit their most beautiful 
china finished ; they did, it seems, till finding people 
remained in it too long, and so took up too much of 
the men s time, so now they send it to the shops in 
Worcester for sale. You pay for seeing the manu- 
facture by putting what you please in a box at the 

We left Worcester about one the morning after we 
got there, and instantaneously entered a fine country. 
Their race -ground is a mighty pretty meadow, of 
an oblong shape, but thought dangerous, as the horses 
going round it on one side are absolutely close to 
the river Severn. Glasshampton,^ a house of Mrs. 
Winford's Ive heard her speak of, lies below on the 
right, Lord Foley's* on the left. Within a few miles 
of Worcester we dined at what they call the ** Hundred 

1 Old family seat of the Winfords j afterwards burnt down by a 
careless drunken worknian. 

* Whitley, now Earl of Dudley's. 



House," a most lonely but sweetly romantic situation, ^77^ 
accommodation dreadful ; but the pleasures of travel- 
ling in my opinion ever compensate for inconveniences 
on the road, and ladies too delicate should remain at 
their own seats ; but the inns on the Bath road really 
make one think others so bad, that people used to 
those, may the more easily be pardon 'd. Sir Edward 
Winnington has a sweet place calFd Stanford Court 
near the " Hundred House," which we passed in our 
way to Court-of-Hill, which we reached about seven 
o'clock, and were received by that family with that 
cheerful ease characteristic of real friendship. I don't 
think we merited such a reception, as 'tis now nine 
summers we have intended to return the visit politely 
made me by these relations^ of Mr. Powys, the follow- 
ing one to that in which we were married ; but I 
don't know how it is, but one is apt to think a journey 
of a hundred miles so vast an undertaking, when in 
fact when once set out 'tis trifling. 

Court-of-Hill is an ancient building, spacious, not 
uncomfortably so, situation particularly fine, the house 
stands on a steep knoll which is laid into paddock, 
from three sides of which 'tis impossible to conceive 
a prospect more beautiful, except for the want of water. 
You look from a vast eminence down on valleys so 
sweetly diversified, then the country rising mountain 
above mountain, almost reaching the clouds ; Malvenj's 
famed hills just in front, and as you look round 
part of eight counties are at once in view — Worcester- 
shire, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, beyond these 
the Welsh ones of Brecknock, Randor, Monmouth, 

* Andrew Hill, of Court-of-Hill, married Anne Powys in 1679, 
daughter of Thomas Powys of Snitton and Henley Hall, Salop. The 
Mr. Hill here mentioned was their grandson. 


1 77 1 and Montgomery. Behind the house is a fine grove, 
bounded by a vast mountain called Clee Hill,^ which 
produces stone, lime, and coal in great abundance. 
This rock or hill is dreadfully steep to ascend, but 
dismally so to descend, tho' they make nothing of it in 
their coach or on horseback. At the top indeed one 
is rewarded for all frights and trouble in the view 
around you ; but don't imagine that, noble as this place 
is, I give up the sweet softness and natural simplicity of 
our Hard wick. . . . And then our Thames may be set 
against their wooded mountains ; but how many truly 
beautiful situations are there in England, and why not 
give each its due praise without depreciating the rest } 
Sir Charles Grandison, you know, had the art of com- 
plimenting twenty women in the same company on 
their peculiar accomplishments, and yet left them all 
satisfied I a much more difficult task than mine. As 
to our relations here, I need say no more than to say 
they bear a most astonishing resemblance to our rela- 
tions in Kent, and express a real friendship for us, 
and prove the reality by conspicuously treating us 
without form or ceremony. Their manner of living, 
as IVe before heard, is always in the superb style 
of ancient hospitality, only their winters are spent in 
London. You see generosity blended with every ele- 
gance of fashionable taste ; but they have a vast 
fortune, and only two children, both girls, one ten, 
the other five. Their house, Mrs. HilP says, is ever 
full of company, as at present Our present party, six- 
teen in all, relations ; but they have nine good spare 
chambers. Among the number is our elegant cousin 
Conyngham, who, I believe, you have heard me men- 

^ Titterstone, the highest of the Clee Hills, is 1780 feet. 
* Was Lucy, daughter of Francis Rock, Esq. 


tion as so very pretty. Nay, General Conway, and 1771 
Mr. Freeman, say the handsomest woman they ever 
saw in France or England. What makes her still more 
lovely is, she has not a grain of affectation, tho' only 
eighteen. He is an agreeable little man, heir to about 
;^5ooo a year. I could not help liking him, he is so 
very like in manner, tho' not near so handsome, as 
my brother, Captain Powys,^ whose sweetness of dis- 
position must ever make one regard his memory. 
Our little Phil, for person and ease', is next in admi- 
ration ; indeed, behaves cleverly, and is no trouble, 
which is lucky, as we have only our man-servant (Mr. 
Powys, you know, loves not travelling with female 
attendants). Indeed, Phil might be spared a nurse 
or two. The Miss Hills have each a servant. Ive 
already seen eight maids ; how many more there be I 
know not. The roads about here are wonderful to 
strangers. Where they are mendings as they call it, 
you travel over a bed of loose stones, none of less size 
than an octavo volume ; and where not mended, 'tis 
like a staircase. There are turnpikes — some of the 
roads not better than where we have none, but some 
are good, and Mr. Hill and other gentlemen are so 
laudably anxious for the improvement of them that 
I imagine in a few years there will be none bad ; for, 
by all accounts, the worst of the present is fine to 
what were formerly. They appear unfit for ladies 
travelling, but they mind them not ; and I thought 
if the delicate Mrs. Conyngham had no fears, such 
a one as your Caroline ought not. So I mounted 
**Grey," Mr. Powys' great horse — luckily a native of 
Shropshire — and up 1 went the tremendous hill before 
mentioned. The fashion here is to ride double. How 

' Captain Richard Powys, died 1768. 


1771 terribly vulgar Ive thought this; but what will not 
fashion render genteel. 'Tis here thought perfectly 
so. As to carriages, they make nothing of going a 
dozen miles to dinner, tho' own to being bruised 
to death, and quite deshabbiller' d by jolts they must 
receive. Here I shall conclude my first epistle. 

From Letter 2nd. 


September %^ \11\» 

. . . Wednesday, the day after we came, and 
Thursday, company to dinner. Friday morn a large 
riding cavalcade set forth to see Henley, a seat of 
their uncle's. Sir Littleton Powys,^ two miles from 
Ludlow. You ve heard us mention, I believe, Mr. 
Powys ^ of Lilford, in Northampton ; he has just sold 
it, rather to the concern of the family, particularly 
the Hills, who were most of them brought up there. 
They indeed could have no prospect of its coming 
to them, being even after us in the entail ; but they 
thitik it a pity to go out of the name that has been 
in possession such a number of years. 'Tis really a 
fine old place, badly situated, but I find 'tis far from 
every part of Shropshire that resembles Court-of- 
Hill. What a monopoly of beauty else would be that 
county ! The house and furniture of Henley are quite 
antique, but one receives pleasure in these reviews 
of former times. In a gallery are the portraits of 

* Sir Littleton Powys, Baron of Exchequer in 1695 ; Chief- Justice of 
Wales, 1697 ; Judge of Common Pleas, 1700; Judge of Queen's Bench ; 
died at Henley Hall, Salop, 1731. 

* Thomas Powys, great-nephew of Sir Littleton, and his heir, father 
of first Baron Lilford* 


our family (not yet removed), for some generations, 1771 
down to the present possessor of Lilford,^ among 
them that of the famous Lord Keeper Littleton.^ On 
our return we rode through a fine park belonging to 
Witton Court,^ one of the two finely situated seats 
Sir Francis Charlton has near Ludlow. Saturday we 
dined at Bitterley, at Mr. Rocke's. Met with no acci- 
dent but breaking a splinter bar. Mighty fortunate, 
too, I thought, considering the roads. There seems 
such confusion with the intermarriages of our cousins, 
that I give over recollecting who they were, and rest 
satisfied with who they are. Mr. Hill married a Miss 
Rock, and Mr. Rock a Miss Hill, &c., &c., just at the 
same period ; so that, as a smart gentleman said on 
paying the wedding visits, ** Really, the Rocks having 
turn'd into Hills, and the Hills into Rocks, it was 
utterly impossible to distinguish them so as to pay 
each his proper compliments on the occasion." 

Sunday at church ; but their own clergyman being 
on a tour of pleasure, we had one too thoroughly 
versed in the Welsh language for us to understand 
the least of what, poor man, he no doubt thought 
English ! 

Monday, you perhaps, who have not a shooting 
husband, may forget was the first day of September, 
but Mrs. Conyngham and I lost ours by six that 
morn ; they were out with their guns, and being 
both excellent shots, were useful in Mrs. Hills 

^ Lilford, Northamptonshire, had been bought from the Elmes family, 
who had possessed the property from Henry VII.'s time, by Sir Thomas 
Powys, in 171 1, grandfather of Mr. T. Powys, who sold Henley Hall, 
and brother of Sir Littleton Powys. 

' Sir Edward Littleton, bom 1589, made Lord Keeper 1641, died 

' Whitton Park ; the other place was Ludford House, at Ludlow. 


1 77 1 numerous family ; others of the gentlemen rode with 
the ladies. 

Tuesday, Sir Walter and Lady Blount to dinner ; 
she was a daughter of Lord Ashton s — very agree- 
able people. I was bid to take notice of a present 
his cousin the Duchess of Norfolk made him at their 
wedding, viz., an exceedingly fine pair of diamond 
buckles, very handsome indeed they are. They are 
Catholics. They obligingly insisted on our dining 
there next week ('tis a mighty fine place, it seems), if 
we would not spend some days there ; but our party 
being so large, we would all have excused ourselves if 
possible even from a dining visit. 

Wednesday morning, I mounted double, but found 
it utterly impossible, as I thought, to keep on, so 
had again recourse to my tall horse and side-saddle, 
provok'd beyond measure to follow Mrs. Hill, who 
sat knotting on her pillion with such unconcern, 
while we were going up and down such places as I 
imagined our necks in danger each step. That even- 
ing we walk'd up the Clee Hill to see the whole 
process of making lime at Mr. Hills kilns.^ To see 
the quarries of solid rock is rather tremendous, not 
made less so by seeing the men standing on its 
sharp points. They make a small hole with a chisel, 
in which they place gunpowder, light it, and retire 
to a safe distance ; you instantly hear the report 
of its blowing up that stone, or rather it only cracks, 
and then the labour is immense before the stone is 
thrown down ; when it does fall, they have to break it 
in pieces very small, and for doing this use hammers 
30 lbs. weight. Only think of labouring with tools so 
ponderous, and these poor fellows work for about a 

^ These kilns are still in work. 


shilling a day. Next a deep round hole is dug, in i77^ 
which is regularly laid bit by bit the pieces of stone 
till raised above the ground five or six feet ; under- 
neath is an oven easily set fire to. As these kilns are 
on the slope of the knoll, they burn four or five days 
and nights, and there being several at a time, have a 
pretty effect from the house in a dark evening. 

Thursday being the first day of Ludlow races, we 
were all to set out for that place. The Pardoes,^ 
at whose house some of us were to be, went the 
evening before to prepare for our reception, and to 
take lodgings for those their house could not hold. 
Ludlow is ten miles from Court-of-Hill. We did 
not set out earlier on the Thursday morn than to 
reach Ludlow just as dinner was ready ; that over, 
we re-enter'd our carriages and proceeded to the 
course,^ that is most exceeding pretty, so calculated 
for a race. 'Tis a circular spot one mile round, and a 
perfect flat, so that the horses are in your view the 
whole time, and the field itself is so beautifully sur- 
rounded by such fine wooded hills that you seem 
in an amphitheatre, surrounded by a country most 
delightfully cultivated. On one side of the course is 
a large mount cut into the turf seats, and one fine 
tree on the top ; this being cover'd by the multitude 
had the drollest effect, and put me so much in mind 
of an ordinary painting I've often seen in cottages of 
a genealogical tree of poor Charles I. The race over, 
we flew back to dress. Here I was better off than 
the rest of the ladies, except Mrs. Conyngham ; her's 
and my man are clever in the hair-dressing way, so 
that we were ready long before those who waited for 

* They were cousins of the Hills, an old Shropshire family. 

* Bromfield racecourse, near Ludlow. 


1 77 1 the hair-dressers. We got to the ball about nine, a 
very agreeable one, tho' 'twas said not near so brilliant 
as formerly. This, indeed, I can easily conceive by 
our race-assembly at Reading, which used to be 
thought the next to York ; but the fashionable resort 
to water-drinking places every summer takes from 
each county those young people who otherwise would 
be ambitious of shining at these annual balls. How- 
ever, Ludlow s assembly, with two lords and six 
baronets' families, might be stil'd tolerable, tho' it 
seem'd a mortifying thing that Lord Clives^ family 
were at Spaw, and Lady Powis^ ill in London. Mr. 
Conyngham and Greenly, as stewards, were of course 
masters of the ceremony, assisted by their ladies. 
Mrs. Conyngham must be ever most elegant, but 
such a figure ornamented by dress and jewels must 
be still more conspicuous. There were many pretty 
women — Miss Pardoe greatly admired ; indeed these 
two cousins, Harriot and Lucy, put me not a little in 
mind of Richardson's ** Harriot Byron, and Lucy 
Selby ; " Lucy Pardoe, like the latter, a very fine girl, 
all pleasing vivacity ; Harriot Conyngham, sweetly 
delicate in manners, with every advantage of person, 
and, if any advantage to us females, I might say 
learn'd, as her father instructed her in the Greek and 
Latin from her earliest years. But to return to and 
then adjourn from the assembly to Mr. Pardoes, 
where our whole company came to supper, not a-bed 
as you may suppose till near five. 

The following morn 'tis the custom of the place 
for all the company to meet at the theatre, which is a 

1 Of Oakley Park, Salop. 

' Wife of first Earl of Powis, of Walcot, Salop, and Powis Castle, 


very pretty one, and always a good set of actors; 1771 
the play always bespoke by the stewards' ladies. 
It was now " The Author and the Citizen," indeed 
performed exceedingly well. This was not over till 
dinner-time. All the gentlemen in town dine at the 
ordinary, and every lady of any consideration is in- 
vited to a Mr. Davis's, a gentleman of large fortune 
in Ludlow, and having been formerly an eminent 
attorney, of course acquainted with the surrounding 
families. She is a very clever, agreeable woman, and 
we had everything in the highest elegance, but it 
look'd so odd sitting down three- or four-and-twenty 
ladies, and not one man (but my very little one, Phil). 
We had not time to sit long at the dessert, tho' con- 
sisting of every kind of fruit, ice, pines, and fine wines, 
as the race-time again drew near, to which we got 
just as the horses started. When over, we returned to 
dress, and then to the assembly, and about four in the 
morn a very large party indeed (being double our 
usual one), met at Mr. Hill's lodgings, where he had 
order'd a supper for a very numerous company. We 
here staid some hours talking over, as usual, the in- 
cidents of the day, and were most exceedingly gay ; 
for I don't agree with Miss Paget (in the novel of 
** The Card "), that a ball when over, ** is a horrid 
thing." I rather think a most diverting one, in recol- 
lecting the droll figures that generally contribute to 
make the group, I can't say it was early that we 
met next day, and I had then to walk about what is 
esteem'd the prettiest town in England. It stands on 
an eminence, or rather brow of a hill, which renders 
every street as remarkable for neatness as they are 
for the goodness of their houses. It was formerly a 
principality of Wales, and their prince resided in the 


1 77 1 now ruinated castle standing at one end of the town. 
From the castle terrace, under which runs the river 
Teme, you look down on it from a vast height, 
while the fine nodding ruin hangs over you on the 
other side, making a landscape the most picturesque. 
As to your little Phil, I believe he was almost in every 
house in Ludlow, as Mrs. Hill stil'd him one of the 
race-week sights. Three or four times a day he acted 
Prince Henry to audiences of twenty or thirty people 
with vast iclat. Luckily he don't mind strangers, 
indeed it has been my endeavour he should not, for I 
think shy children of his age are dreadful. One day 
at the course Lord Bateman came up to the coach, 
and says to Mrs. Hill, "What is the name of that 
beautiful boy "i " He gave her no time to answer, but 
says " My name is Philip Lybbe Powys, of Oxford- 
shire." ** Why then, Philip," replied his Lordship, ** you 
are the very finest fellow I ever saw in my life." Poor 
man ! he is, it seems, remarkably fond of children, and 
wrongly miserable that he has none. Indeed, one 
finds them most agreeable douceurs when with one. 
But now, for instance, my little Tom, at the distance 
he is now from me, makes me feel for him each 
moment lest he should not be well as I left him. . . . 
I find it impossible to finish my journal while here, as 
we go so soon, but you shall, if you desire it, have the 
conclusion in a third letter as soon as I get home. 

Letter 3RD. 


September 22ndj 1771. 

Here we are, my dear Margaretta, once more 
returned to our beloved Hardwick, happy that, not- 


withstanding the noble prospects we have seen, this 1771 
still appears more beautiful than ever, and doubly 
happy were we to find those well we have been so 
long absent from. . . . We quitted the very pretty 
town of Ludlow with our large party on the Saturday 
evening, all of whom had promised to return to Court-of- 
Hill for the time we were to stay there. Indeed, the 
set was a most agreeable one, never less than sixteen 
or eighteen of ourselves, and most days additional 
company. . . . Sunday pass'd, as usual, with people 
cheerfully thanking for the enjoyments of life. We 
now heard an excellent preacher in Mr. Bowles. 

Monday, the morning as usual divided into parties 
of riding, walking, shooting, reading, working, drawing. 
Never met at dinner till after four (this, too, you 
know, is the usual Hardwick hour), tho\ indeed, in 
the shooting season seldom before five. A walk in 
general after tea, and in the evening a large pope 
table, ^ another quadrille, and many lookers-on besides ; 
never supp'd till near eleven, or a-bed till near two. So 
as I generally had letters to write at night, and Phil's 
rising to shoot with Conyngham by seven, I don't 
really think I could say I had a night's rest while 

Tuesday, the family of Bowles to dinner. This 
name you know, as the father,* who lives near 
London, is, I think, tenant of Mr. Wheatley's, his 
eldest son not married. This is the second, and a 
clergyman,^ married a Miss Hale, a Herefordshire 
beauty of very large fortune. He has, indeed, a good 
income, ;^ 12,000, as one of the younger children, and 

* Game of Pope Joan. 

* Humphrey Bowles of Wanstead, Essex. 

' Rev. George Bowles, ancestor of Baron Northwick. 


1 77 1 the two livings here in their own gift. I never saw 
anything so handsome, too much so for a man, I 
think. It seems he is the image of his sister, who 
married Sir John Rushout s son when Becky Bowles, 
I've ever heard talk'd of as a perfect beauty. These 
Bowles live at Burford, a fine house badly situated. 

Wednesday, a Miss Strahen came for one night 
on her way to Shrewsbury races. This daughter of 
Sir Patrick Strahen's IVe long known by name, 
being almost a proverb for plainness. Two gentlemen 
once laid a wager that each could name the ugliest 
woman in London, the company were to judge, and 
poor Miss Strahen was mentioned by both ! She came 
the moment before dinner, and Mrs. Conyngham 
happening to sit next her, and I opposite to both, it 
was hardly possible to suppose those two of the same 
species ; but would you imagine with such a counten- 
ance she had a hand and arm the most beautiful, nay, 
she is so agreeable, so exceedingly clever, so every- 
thing but handsome, that before she left Court-of-Hill 
next day, I had lost the idea of her bad person. She 
must have been sensible in her youth her chance 
for society was the cultivation of her mind ; in that she 
succeeded ; no one's company is more sought. You 
can't imagine a person of rank she is not intimate 
with. They told me that in person she was really 
every year more agreeable, and I fancy if Miss 
Strahen would take a more matronly title, as her 
person is genteel, she'd soon pass for a good comely 
woman, an excellent exchange for that of an ugly 
Miss, in my opinion. 

Thursday we were to dine at Sir Walter Blount's. 
We had all been invited, but it being utterly impos- 
sible for all to go, Mrs. Hill left eleven, besides 


children at home, and attended three of us ladies in 1771 
the coach, Mr. Hill, Mr. Conyingham, and Mr. Powys 
on horseback. Mawley, the seat of Sir Walter, is 
ten miles from Court-of-Hill ; the road over the Clee 
Hill more horrid than any I had yet seen, literally 
mended with the iron-stone. We were, however 
shook mighty merry, and only forced to get out once. 
Had the sweetest views. In about two hours and 
three-quarters we got there. Mawley is indeed a 
very fine place. They begged us to be early, to go 
over the house before dinner. The floors are most 
of them inlaid like those of the Queen s palace, as 
is the grand staircase ; that and the hall being ex- 
ceedingly pleasant. Every room is carved in the 
most expensive taste. In what is call'd the little 
drawing-room, the wainscot, floor, and furniture are 
inlaid with festoons of flowers in the most curious 
manner with woods of different colours. I n this room 
is a cabinet of ivory and ebony, a present to the late 
Sir Edward from China. It would take hours to 
examine it. Out of this is the state bed-chamber, bed 
and furniture crimson velvet and gold lace. The 
library, eating-room, and large drawing-room all good. 
Lady Blount s dressing-room you may imagine ele- 
gant ; fine India paper on pea -green, put up by 
Spinage, with equal taste as Mrs. Freeman's (at 
Fawley Court, Bucks), by Bromwich. The chambers 
all good, spacious, and well-furnish'd. I think Lady 
Blount has more chintz counterpanes than in one 
house I ever saw ; not one bed without very fine 
ones. But she seems to have everything very clever, 
and a thousand nick-nacks from abroad, as one gene- 
rally sees in these Catholic families. The elegance of 
their table you may suppose not inferior to that of 


1 77 1 their house; genteelest service of plate, and every- 
thing that was in season. The gentlemen at dinner, 
speaking of the present dearness of provision and rise 
of meat, Sir Walter said they indeed were exempt 
from the imposition of a butcher, as they kill'd all 
their own, and did not go to market for one thing. 
This must be exceedingly comfortable to a man of 
large family and large fortune, both of which he is 
possessed of. I believe I told you she was a daugh- 
ter of Lord Aston, and co-heiress of ;^200,ooo. Sir 
Walter and Lady Blount are both about thirty, both 
rather handsome — would be more so if both were not 
too inclined to grow fat ; are most agreeable and 
easy in their manners, and have three charming boys, 
the eldest not three years old, and a fourth coming. 
Never did three little creatures look so pretty ; the 
two youngest in fine sprigg'd muslin ^ jams, the eldest 
in a vest and tunic of tambour (Lady Blount's own 
work), large sprigs of gold on a thin muslin lin'd 
with pink. I much wanted to see their chapel, as I 
imagine it must be superb. There were many pic- 
tures about, and one small room with many fine reli- 
gious subjects. 

We were talking of the amazing wit of Pope, who 
was often at Mawley, tho' much oftener at our neigh- 
bours the Blounts of Maple-Durham, where there is 
such fine portraits of himself and Patty Blount. One 
day Sir Walters father was in his company and 
talking of punning. Pope said that was a species of 
wit so triflingly easy that he would answer to make 
one on any proposed subject offhand, when a lady in 
the company said, **Well, then, Mr. Pope, make one 
on keelhauling." He instantly replied, ** That, madam, 

^ Jamdari, a figured Indian muslin. 


is indeed putting a man under a hard ship !'' Keel- 1771 
hauling is drawing a man under a ship. What a 
ready invention must the man have had ! One could 
hardly have found a more crabbed word to exercise 
the punster s faculty. 

They would fain have persuaded us to come 
there for some days, obligingly saying it was far 
the nearest road in our way home, but we had 
already exceeded our intended stay from Hard wick. 
The next day we had an invitation to Croft Castle,^ 
Mr. Johns, and for the day after to Bur ford,* Mr. 
Bowies', but as we had fixed the next Monday for 
our departure, we got Mrs. Hill to make our proper 
compliments for not waiting on these families. We 
all had a very high entertainment for some days 
in finding Mr. and Mrs. Evans at Court-of-Hill the 
evening we came from Mawley. Mr. Evans is, or 
rather was, a poor Welsh clergyman, having ;^i8 
only a year, till Mr. Hill gave him a small living 
which made his income to about ;^8o, making him 
and his wife the most happy as well as most grateful 
couple in all Wales. They are always desired to pay 
an annual visit to their benefactor, and not knowing 
the house was full of company, or having sense enough 
to make inquiry, they came, and at first, I verily 
believe, were near frightened to death ; but as all 
insisted on their stay, and took the utmost pains to 
encourage them, they soon seem'd, at least the wife, 
charm'd to a degree. Indeed ours was the most 
difficult task, for while she was a novelty, it was 

' The Crofts had been seated here from Edward the Confessor tiU 
the reign of George III., when Sir H. Croft sold it to Mr. Johns. 

' Burford House, once the Mortimers', then Barons of Cornwall, sold 
to William Bowles, M.P., ancestor of Lord North wick, the present owner. 


1 77 1 hardly possible to keep one's countenance — a very 
large, far from ugly woman, continually inquiring 
about fashions, and not willing to be out of it. 
Having, I imagine, heard ladies wore curls, she had 
literally an amazing frizzed black wig ; her clothes 
were good and in great variety, but you may guess 
how made and how put on. With all this finery she 
keeps no maid, nor he a man. At sitting down to 
supper, she takes out a flaming coloured linen handker- 
chief, and pinn'd it by way of bib on each shoulder. 
Mrs. Hill, being aware that this usual ceremony 
must have nearly killed the most of the company 
with laughing, had whisper 'd it about before we left 
the drawing-room, and we were all weak enough to 
imagine politeness would come, if not by instinct, yet 
by example. But we were miserably mistaken, for 
this badge of meal-time was daily three times dis- 
played ; so you may judge of what with her figure and 
determination to taste of every **nice thing," as she 
term'd them at table, if it were hardly possible to keep 
our countenances free from a smile. As to venison, 
she did not seem tired either with the sight or 
taste, as we most of us were, as Mrs. Hill once was 
obliged to give us a haunch for five days running, 
they had such quantities sent them ; but in Shropshire 
they have not yet come into the saving method of 
disparking, as about us, where venison now is abso- 
lutely a rarity. Tve had but two haunches at Hard- 
wick this summer, not even our annual buck from 
Blenheim. The poor Duke ^ of Marlborough is forced 
some years to send his excuses, tho' from the old 
Duchess my father had an unlimited warrant for 
both bucks and does, as many as he chose to send 

^ The second Duke. 


for.^ Mr. Evans, poor man, tho' equally illiterate, 1771 
had not the droUness of his wife, and rather chose 
breakfasting on cold pasty with " the gentleman," 
as he styl'd Mr. Hills servant out of livery, than 
with our gentlemen. But she was really diverting, 
laugh'd so hearty, and seem'd so happy, particularly 
when Conyngham talked Welsh to her. 

One evening at tea Mrs. Pardoe, who is ex- 
ceedingly droll and clever, whispers Mrs. Evans that 
now she had been so long with all the ladies, she 
wanted to know how she lik*d them. "Oh, to be 
sure, 'tis a fine sight to see so many, and so well 
dress'd too." ** But give me your opinion of them. 
My niece Conyngham, is she not exceedingly hand- 
some.'^" **Why, ah! mighty well, to be sure.'* 
" Mighty well. Why, she is reckon d quite a beauty." 
"Yes, yes, IVe heard — I have heard so. To be sure 
she is very well, for all that she is so spare.** " My 
sister Hill, then, she is fatter. What is your opinion 
of her?** " Oh, Madam Hill is mighty well look'd." 
'*And Mrs. Powys.'^" "Mrs. Powys is a mighty 
clever lady. Has a good eye." (I told Mrs. Pardoe 
I suppose they only saw my profile, or else both eyes 
might have come in for a compliment.) Miss Galaher 
comely. Miss Pardoe very smartish, and so she 
went on. Then, turning to Mrs. Pardoe, " But, 
indeed, indeed, you yourself are far the hand- 
somest." Once, indeed, Mrs. Pardoe was pretty to 
a degree, but we begg'd her now not to be vain on 

^ There is a warrant from the great Duke of Marlborough to Mr. 
Powys extant. "May i, 1739. — To the keepers in Woodstock Park, 
Stone, Ash worth, and Wyatt. This is to order you to send to Mr. Powys 
whenever he pleases to command them, every season, without any 
new directions from me, one brace of bucks and another of does. — 
J. Marlborough." 


1 77 1 the given preference, as it was size only that made 
her obtain it ! 

On Monday we quitted this every-way agreeable 
Court-of- H ill. I cannot say we set out so early as we 
ought, as they all insisted on seeing us at breakfast, 
which afterwards we ladies at least repented, as most 
of us rose from the table in tears at the breaking of a 
circle in which for three weeks we had with so little 
ceremony and sincere friendship experienced the real 
enjoyment of a large society. The day, unfortunately, 
was the only bad one we had had, and that of course 
seem'd to participate in one's gloomy ideas ; but by 
the time we reached the Hundred House the dav 
and ourselves brightened up ; for you know Phil and 
your Caroline cannot be long unhappy when not sepa- 
rated, and we had an agreeable journey to Worcester, 
there dined, and walk'd about a good deal, taking the 
boy to the Cathedral. On our way to Broadway, 
where we lay, we were surprised at the amazing 
numbers of Quakers we met, but afterwards heard 
they were going to Evesham. Once in seven 
years 'tis their rule to meet at four different places 
to settle their accounts. The next morn we walk'd 
up Broadway Hill, from the top of which is seen 
Ragley (Lord Hertford's), Overbury (Mr. Martin's), 
and many others. We pass'd that morn the four- 
shire stone, ^ at which point Worcester", Gloucester", 
Oxfordshire, and Warwick" meet. Near Woodstock 
you see at one view Blenheim, Lord Lichfield's, and 
Sir James Dash wood's. The first, as I told you, we 
intended to spend some time at. The inside of the 

^ A stone pillar, which also stands on the site of a battle between 
the Saxons and Danes, in which Canute was defeated by Edmund 



house I've given a description of in a former journal. 1771 
The new piece of water is a grand design of Brown s, 
tho' I think one too plainly sees that 'tis only di piece 
of water, which I should have thought might have 
been concealed by a genius so great as Mr. Brown s 
in design. We dined and stay'd a vast while in 
Oxford ; indeed it is a place so entertaining one can 
hardly ever quit it, and our little fellow-traveller was 
so diverted with the grandeur of it, that we did not 
reach Hard wick till between nine and ten, when, as 
I before, I believe, told you, we had the inexpressible 
satisfaction of finding all that we could wish. . . . 

From Hardwick to Benson . . . . 



Benson to Oxford 



Oxford to Woodstock 



Woodstock to Chapel House 



Chapel House to Broadway . . . . 



Broadway to Pershore .... 



Pershore to Worcester 



Worcester to Hundred House 



Hundred House to Court-of-Hill . 

• 15 




October 1771. — Mrs. Freeman's,^ Fawley Court, 
Bucks, I've deferred mentioning, tho' so frequently 
there, till it was more finished. 'Tis in Buckingham- 
shire, built by this gentleman's father,* but, though 
always an excellent house, had no ornaments till now, 
when Mr. Freeman has laid out £9^ooo, I believe, in 
inside decorations, besides having the celebrated Mr. 
Brown ' to plan the grounds. We spent a week there 

^ Once the seat of Sir Bulstrode Whitelock. Sold to the Freemans 
after the Restoration. 

' Wrong ; his great-unde, William Freeman, in 1684. 

' Lancelot Brown, nicknamed "Capability" Brown, eminent land* 
scape gardener. 



1 77 1 this year in the shooting season, and tho' one had 
seen it so frequently while the improvements were 
going on, one could hardly have imagined either house 
or its environs could have been so embellished by the 
artist s hand. Every room is of a good house size, 
being fitted in an elegant, and each in a different 
style. The hall is a very noble one ; round it statues 
on pedestals, some fine ones large as life. It's stucco'd 
of a French grey. The saloon answerable to the hall, 
with light blue and gold cord. In this room are many 
fine pictures, a magnificent organ at the lower end, 
inlaid with many curious woods ; a fine chimney- 
piece, two very beautiful marble tables, on each an 
elegant candlebranch of ormolu ; the paper cost fifty 
guineas! The ceiling of this room is very fine old 
stucco, which Mr. Freeman thought too good to be 
destroyed. On the right hand is the drawing-room, 
fitted up with every possible elegance of the present 
taste, hung with crimson strip'd damask, on which are 
to be pictures ; a most beautiful ceiling painted by 
Wyatt ; the doors curiously inlaid, the window-shut- 
ters painted in festoons, a sweet chimney-piece, a 
grate of Tutenar s, cost 100 guineas ; two exceed- 
ingly large pier glasses, the chairs and confidant sofa 
in the French taste. This room leads to the eating- 
room, in which the colour of the stucco painted of a 
Quaker brown. The ceiling and ornaments round 
the panels all display such an elegant simplicity of 
neatness that I almost prefer this to any room at 
Fawley Court. On the left hand of the saloon is a 
large billiard-room hung with the most beautiful pink 
India paper, adorn'd with very good prints, the 
border? cut out and the ornaments put on with 
great taste by Broomwich, and the pink colour, be- 



sides being uncommon, has a fine effect under prints. 1771 
From this room you enter the breakfast- parlour, a 
sweet apartment, peagreen stucco, gold border, elegant 
chimney-piece, green marble with gilt ornaments ; the 
sofa and chairs, Mrs. Freeman's work, a French pat- 
tern, pink, green, and grey ; curtains, peagreen lute- 
string. In recesses on each side the chimney are two 
elegant cases of English woods inlaid, glazed so as to 
show all the curiosities they contain of fossils, shells, 
ores, &c., &c., in which Mr. Freeman^ is curious, and 
has a fine collection. On one side of the room is a 
large bookcase of the above woods, and at the 
bottom of the room is a table in which the maker 
has amazingly displayed his genius in disposing the 
different colours. Near this is a small library. The 
staircase, now separated from the hall, is a superb 
one, and the apartments above nobly spacious as the 
rooms below. The best room is furnish'd with bed, 
&c, of the late Mrs. Freeman's work. One is seldom 
partial, I think, to ladies' work of this kind, as it 
generally carries the date of the age it was perform'd 
in, but this is peculiarly fine, differs from any one ever 
saw, and certainly does her honour. Her own picture 
is properly placed over the chimney of this room. 
The dressing-room to this is prettier than 'tis possible 
to imagine, the most curious India paper as birds, 
flowers, &c., put up as different pictures in frames of 
the same, with festoons, India baskets, figures, &c., 
on a peagreen paper, Mr. Broomwich having again 
displayed his taste as in the billiard-room below, and 
both have an effect wonderfully pleasing. The next 
bedchamber is furnish'd with one of the finest red- 

^ This was Sambrook Freeman, great-nephew of the first Freeman 


177 1 grounded chintz I ever saw, the panels of the room 
painted, in each a different Chinese figure larger than 
life. In the dressing-room to this, an exceedingly 
pretty tent of Darius bed. The third capital apart- 
ment is furnished with bed, counterpane, &c., of 
yellow damask, the room hung with India paper, buff 
ground. Over the chimney in this dressing-room a 
droll picture of a Chinese pauper. 

There are numberless other more common rooms, 
but Mrs. Freeman's own dressing-room must be men- 
tioned as most elegant. The room is a dove-color d 
stucco, ornamented with pictures and a thousand other 
curiosities, as one might expect to see in the particular 
apartment of the mistress of Fawley Court. 

The grounds laid out by Mr. Brown with his usual 
taste. Though Mr. Freeman's own house unfortu- 
nately cannot boast a situation so uncommonly eligible 
as his parsonage, yet tho' at the bottom of the hill, it 
stands on a fine knoll, commands a beautiful view 
of the Thames and surrounding hills, cover d with 
the finest beech woods. Mrs. Freeman has a pretty 
menagerie and most elegant dairy in the garden, 
ornamented with a profusion of fine old china. 

N.B. — Since the above, Mr. Freeman has erected 
an elegant building in his island,^ planned and exe- 
cuted by Wyatt,* and the room is ornamented in a 
very expensive manner. 

In December 1771, being at my cousin Wheatley's 
in Kent to spend Xmas with a very large party, they 
were so obliging as to take us to see many places, the 
weather being remarkably fine. We set out first for 
Knole, that fine old seat of the Dukes of Dorset . . . 

^ This is now the so-called " Regatta Island." 

' James Wyatt, eminent architect, bom 1743 ; died 1813. 


It stands in a park of eight miles circumference, and ^77^ 
not a little resembles the old stone Colleges of Oxford. 
Part of it was built four hundred years since, and part 
in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. Tis a double quad- 
rangle, spacious to a degree that's hardly credible, 
having, as the groom of the chambers informed us, 
five hundred rooms, tho' he own'd he never had patience 
to count them, tho' he often had the thirty-five stair- 
cases. In the old Duke's ^ time, he said, the company 
us'd to be as innumerable as the apartments, and made 
us laugh by an instance of this, having desir'd the 
housekeeper to count the sheets she gave out, having 
delivered fourscore pairs, she said, she would count no 
longer ! One is almost sorry the present owner has it 
not in his power to keep up this ancient hospitality, 
but everything possible was left from the title — a great 
pity with such a seat as Knole. One goes through 
the apartments with concern that this young Duke 
cannot refit the furniture of each. One longs to repair 
every old chair, table, bed, or cabinet, exactly in its 
former taste, particularly in the room called the king's 
bedchamber, the furniture of which was a present from 
the royal family, and certainly had been equal to the 
rank of the donor and splendid to a degree. The 
bed and chairs cost ;^8ooo,^ the outside cloth of gold, 
the inside that of silver, the beakers, jars, &c., on the 
cabinets of most curious filigree, the frames of all the 
glasses, sconces, tables, and chairs, of solid emboss'd 
silver. In that, and many other rooms likewise, old 
cabinets very fine with silver emboss'd frames. The 
pictures I should imagine to be the finest, and no 
doubt the largest collection in England. The portraits 

^ Charles Sackville, second Duke. His nephew succeeded him. 
* The bed alone cost £yxx>. The whole fittings of room, £20^00. 


1 77 1 of the family for many generations. One parlour is 
hung round with all the English poets only. 'Tis 
amazing and impossible to enumerate the many fine 
pieces in each room, and the present Duke has just 
brought many, being just returned from abroad, par- 
ticularly a Lucretia, by Titian, from Rome. The 
chapel here is pretty and adorn'd with some fine 
painted glass. 

The Powys also visited Sir Gregory Page's, Black- 
heath ; Sir George Young s at Foots Cray Place ; and 
Sir Sampson Gideon's villa called Belvidere, lately 
Lord Baltimore's. Of this it is stated : — 

"Commanding a noble view of the river Thames 
for above twenty miles. Thirty or forty sail constantly 
passing and repassing before you. The house is very 
small, except two rooms built by Mr. Gideon, Sir 
Sampson's father, for his pictures, which, tho' numerous 
are exceeding pleasing. In the eating- room, two 
paintings by Teniers over the door you enter. Van 
Tromp over the other, Rembrandt by himself, two 
fine heads ; the creatures entering the Ark, by Rubens ; 
two insides of churches, very fine. The Genealogy of 
our Saviour by Albert Durer, capital tho' not pleasing ; 
two views of Venice by Canaletti ; two small landscapes 
with horses, beautiful, by Wouvermans ; two landscapes 
by Poussins ; a fine piece of dead game with a dog bark- 
ing at it ; Boors at cards, and other Dutch pictures of 
Teniers. In the drawing-room on one side of the 
chimney, the Duchess of Buckingham and three children 
large as life, and one of Rubens' children with them, all 
by Rubens ; on the other side Mars and Venus, the 
latter face the most pleasingly beautiful I ever saw ; 
opposite, at the bottom of the room, the Assumption 



of the Virgin Mary, the Flight into Egypt, both 1771 
large as life, by Merelli ; ^ over the door, Snyders, 
his wife and child, by Rubens ; Our Saviour in the 
Temple amid the Doctors ; on the other, Venus and 
Cupid, an allegorical piece ; the rest of the house 
very small — two small parlours, in one, panels painted 
of monkeys, another Scaramotukes, which the old 
Lord Baltimore used to call the Monkey and Scara- 
mouch parlours. {N.B. — Since I was at Belvidere, 
I hear Sir Sampson has rebuilt the house in a most 
magnificent taste, and immensely large)." 

1772. — On January 2nd Mr. Wheatley took us 1772 
to see Mereworth, built by Lord Westmoreland in 
17 1 5, and left at his death to Lord Despencer, the 
present owner. The plan is in the Italian taste, 
for coolness as we were informed; but, in a country 
so different as ours from Italy, 'tis a plan, I think, 
unnecessary to adopt, as it seems to make one's 
residence uncheerful. As you enter from a vast flight 
of steps, a large hall of an octagonal figure, lighted 
only from a dome on the top, so entirely excluding 
the sun ; opposite the great doors the saloon or 
picture gallery — many capital ones. The staircases 
are made in the corners of the octagon hall — of 
course, winding, narrow, and steep. At the top is 
a gallery round, and looking down on the hall ; 
round this are the chambers, more spacious and con- 
venient than one would imagine, but on the whole 
*tis not a pleasing house. 

January 18/^, 1772. — At court on the Queen's 
birth-night, her Majesty dressed in buff satin, trimmed 
with the sable just made her a present of by the 
Empress of Russia.* The Princess of Brunswick * was 

^ Murillo. ^ Catherine IL ' Augusta, sister of George III. 


1772 there, coming on a visit to her mother, then ill. We 
used to think her, though not handsome, a good 
figure, but she is now grown so fat and plain, that, 
tho' covered with jewels, I never saw a woman that 
looked more unfashionable. 

January 28/^, 1772. — This week the town was in 
a vast bustle at the opening of the Pantheon, and Mr. 
Cadogan was so obliging to send me his tickets for 
the first night. As a fine room I think it grand 
beyond conception, yet Tm not certain Ranelagh 
struck me not equally on the first sight, and as a 
diversion 'tis a place I think infinitely inferior, as there 
being so many rooms, no communication with the 
galleries, the staircase inconvenient, all rather con- 
tribute to lose the company than show them to 

February Zth, 1772, died the Princess Dowager 
of Wales, mother to the present King George III., 
was buried the 15th, and Sunday the i6th began the 
public mourning, twelve weeks in crape and bombazine, 
broad hemm*d linen, a fortnight black silk, fringed 
linen, drest and undrest greys, or black and white, and 
another fortnight colour d ribbons, white and silver, 
&c. ; went quite out the loth May. 

1773 January 6tk, 1773. — Mr. Powys, myself, and our 
eldest boy went to Bath for five weeks for Mr. Powys' 
health, and the waters were of infinite service to him. 
While there we saw King's Weston, a fine place of 
Mr. Lenthairs ; breakfasted at the Hot Wells, Bristol, 
which I always think a most melancholy place out of 
the season ; saw the Bristol glass-houses, which are 
really curious. The celebrated Miss Linley (after- 
wards Mrs. Sheridan), was now a capital singer at 
Bath. We heard her in "Acis and Galatea," and 


nothing but the elegance of her figure can equal her i773 

November. — Being then in London, went to see 
Mrs. Wright's waxworks, which, tho' exceedingly well 
executed, yet being as large as life, if of one's particular 
friends, 'tis rather a likeness strikingly unpleasing. 

February ^th, 1775. — Caroline Isabella born at a i77S 
quarter after two in the afternoon. 

On July 5th went to Stowe.^ Sir Charles,* Lady 
and Miss Price, Mr. Powys and myself, set out in 
our two phaetons. On our way to Abingdon, we 
stopped to see Mr. Phillips,^ the builder's house, Culham 
House. From there to Abingdon, dined there, and 
got to Oxford early in the evening. It happen'd, as 
we before knew, to be the time of Commemoration, 
but we none of us chose taking different dresses for 
that occasion, as we had been at that and the oratorios 
the year before, when at Mr. Schutz's of Shotover. 
The performers were the same as Miss Davis, and 
Linley, Gerdini, Ficher, &c. But tho* we did not go 
to the music, we did to Merton Gardens after the 
assembly was over, and it being a beautiful evening, 
it was really a most pleasing sight to observe the 
variety of dress. Those from the theatre full drest, 

^ The seat of the Duke of Buckingham and Chandos. 

* Sir Charles Price of Blount's Court, Oxon. His second wife, Mary 
Brigham, of Cane End, Oxon. 

^ Mr. Phillips was a remarkable person, and undertook the public 
works and buildings, now occupying a whole department, for the sum of 
;£53,384 per annum. He built Battersea and Culham Bridges over the 
Thames. Was a great collector of pictures and china. He lies buried 
in Hagbourne churchyard with this epitaph, " Here lycth the body of 
Thomas Phillips, son of Matthew Phillips of this parish, whose known 
skill, and diligence in his profession, joined with great probity in his 
dealings, gained him that reputation in business which recommended him 
to be carpenter to their majesties King George I. and King George H. 
He died the 14 August 1736, aged 47 years." 


1775 accidental travellers in riding dresses, the Oxonians in 
their gowns and caps. It had almost the appearance 
of a masquerade. Thursday, we went to Bicester, 
a most dismal and unsafe road as I ever travelled in 
my life. Soon after we passed Sir James Dashwood's 
at Cadlington,^ which seems a melancholy situation. 
I rather fancy we lost our way, as the roads were so 
bad. I often thought the phaetons could not stand 
the ruts, and to complete our miseries it was impossible 
for Macbeth's Witches to have been in a worse storm 
of thunder, lightning, and rain, after a most unpleasing 
morning. We got to Bicester in a torrent of water. 
The people at the inn seeing us in phaetons thought 
only of beds for us, but we ourselves most luckily were 
the least wet. I can't say the same for our servants, 
all four nearly drowned, but by taking great care of 
them none were luckily ill, and in the evening we got 
to Buckingham ; but hearing there was an inn 
quite at the park gate at Stowe, we chose to lay 
there to take the first fine weather for seeing the 
place. This we afterwards almost repented, as never 
were accommodations so wretched. The next morn- 
ing, very fortunately, was exactly such a one as we 
wished it to be. The garden being a five-mile walk, 
which we accomplished with great ease, as you go 
over the house when just half round the grounds. 
These more than answered my expectation, as I had 
always heard it represented as a perfect flat, which 
it by no means is, as you ascend the whole two- 
miles avenue from Buckingham. The buildings used, 
I know, to be thought too numerous, but in such an 
extent I do not think even that, and the fine planta- 
tions now grown up to obscure them properly, must 

^ Kirtlington Park. 


add infinitely to many picturesque views of porticos, 1775 
temples, &c., which when originally were exposed 
at once, with perhaps three or four more seen from 
the same point, must have had a very different and 
crowded effect. The house, which will be one of 
the most noble in the kingdom, we then saw to 
infinite disadvantage, as entirely altering, a fine new 
saloon not even cover'd in, scaffolding around the 
whole building, every room unfurnished, all the fine 
pictures taken down. There is some of the fam'd 
Gobelin tapestry at Stowe, which (I own I may 
be partial to English manufacture), is not in my 
opinion anything equal to Saunders, at Lord Cado- 
gan s, Caversham Lodge. 

We lay that night at Aylesbury, passed Lady 
Tents, Sir William Stanhopes, and Sir William 
Lees,^ both near that town. The next morning by 
Wendover is Mr. King Dash wood's,^ a brother of 
Lord Le Despencer's ; two miles from thence is 
Hampden^ Lord Trevors, and at Missenden* is the 
fine old abbey of that name sweetly situated. At 
High Wycombe Lord Shel bourne has an odd pretty 
place just at the end of the town. We went on to 
dine at West Wycombe, as the Prices had never seen 
the so-much-fam'd church of Lord Le Despencer s. 
The house, ^ which we first saw, is nothing remarkable, 
tho' very habitably good ; you enter it sideways thro' 
a portico — odd and uncommonly pleasing, some good 
pictures, the gardens and park pretty, those and the 
house much improved since we were there before. 

* Hart well House. 
' Wycombe Park. 

^ Belongs to the Earl of Buckinghamshire. 

* Formerly Abbey of Austin Canons, founded circ 1133. 
' West Wycombe House. 


1775 The new church and mausoleum, on an immense 
eminence, dreadful for the old people at least to 
ascend ; the former gives one not the least idea of a 
place sacred to religious worship. 'Tis a very superb 
Egyptian Hall, no pews, pulpit, or desk, except two 
ornamental seats which answer the two latter pur- 
poses. The font is shown as an elegant toy ; in fine, 
it has only the appearance of a neat ballroom with 
rows of forms on each side. The mausoleum is a 
six-angled open wall of flints, stone ornaments, and 
rows of Tuscan pillars, two of the six divisions are 
occupied with dedications to Lord Melcomb and 
Westmoreland, and in the centre of the mausoleum 
is a monument for Lady Despencer, lately dead. 
On the whole this extraordinary building is well 
worth the observation of strangers. We that night 
went to my brother at Fawley,^ parting near there 
with the Prices, who, as ourselves, seem'd greatly 
pleas d with our little tour. 

1776 1776. — The most severe frost in my memory 
began January 7th and lasted till February 2nd. It 
began to snow about two in the morning as we were 
returning from a ball at Southcote, and kept snowing 
for twelve days, tho' none fell in quantities after the 
first three days, but the inconvenience from that on 
the ground was soon very great, as strong north-east 
winds blew it up in many places twelve to thirteen 
feet deep, so that numbers of our cottagers on the 
common were oblig d to dig their way out, and then 
hedges, gates, and stiles being invisible, and all 
hollow ways levelled, it was with vast difficulty the 
poor men could get to the village to buy bread ; 
water they had none, but melted snow for a long 

* Fawley Rectory. 


while, and wood could not be found — a more parti- 1776 
cular distress in Oxfordshire, as our poor have always 
plenty of firing for little trouble. As to our own 
family, we were fifteen days without the butcher from 
Reading being able to get to us, and then he came 
on foot, but luckily we had sheep, hogs, and poultry ; 
our farmyard looked like a picture IVe seen of all 
animals collected to enter the ark, as all our sheep, 
cows, horses, &c., were oblig d to be fodder d there. 
We could have no news or letters from Henley or 
Reading for ten days, but then we began to be so 
impatient we got a man to venture on foot ; no horse 
passed for a month, or cart for two. On the fifteenth 
day the butcher sent over two men with a little beef 
and veal, which then began to be scarce even there ; 
not one team at Reading market the Saturday after 
it began — a thing never known. The two Lon- 
don waggons came in with sixteen and fourteen 
horses ; but one horseman that day thro' the turn- 
pike ; all stages and machines stopped for ten or 
twelve days on the very best roads. It kept on 
freezing intensely after it had done snowing, the river 
being froze over from Whitchurch to Maple-Durham. 
Some of our people were silly enough to walk over 
it. Two hundred and seventeen men were employ'd 
on the Oxford turnpike between Nettlebed and Ben- 
son to cut a road for carriages, but then a chaise 
could not go with a pair of horses, and very danger- 
ous, like driving on glass. A waggon loaded with 
a family's goods from London was overturned, a deal 
of damage done in china, &c, but 'tis astonishing 
any one would venture to send any goods in such 
a time, or venture themselves. We wish'd much to 
have had some company in the house, but we were 


1776 even so unfortunate, as not to have Mr. Pratt, my 
brother, and our boy Phil, as they were all at my 
Lord Camden's for the Christmas. Our gamekeeper 
measured a piece of ice from a pond on the 29th ; 
it was nine inches and a half thick. The beer and 
ale froze as they drew it, and the cream was forced to 
be put in the oven to thaw before they could chum 
it for butter, all my tender greenhouse plants died, 
did not save one geranium, the oranges and myrtles 
not hurt, or any shrubs or flower-roots out of doors, 
the snow no doubt preserved them. Every one 
dreaded the so-much-wish*d-for thaw ; we by the 
river expected a deluge, but, thank God ! never could 
such severe weather end more moderately. On the 
2nd February began a most gentle thaw, and the 
immense quantities of snow melted away by gentle 
degrees to every one s astonishment. The road to 
Reading continued impassable till the 15th, after 
that the way was shovelled, but when I went long 
after, it was in many parts a lane of snow above the 
coach windows. There was a deal of snow on the 
20th March! I fancy the weather of 1776 was very 
like what Sir William Temple in his works mentions 
of 1678 in Charles II. time: ** I was going," says 
Sir William, **from the Hague to Niemegen, the 
inclemency of the season such as was never known 
in any man's memory, the snow in many places nearly 
ten feet deep, and ways for my coach to be digg d 
through in many places ; several postboys died upon 
the road. I passed both Rhine and Weal with 
both coaches and waggons upon the ice, and never 
suffered so much from weather in my life as in 
this journey, in spite of all I could do to provide 
against it, yet was it perfectly ridiculous to see 


people walking about with long icicles from their 1776 


Before resuming Mrs. Powys' experiences, it must 
be acknowledged, from notes of her various occupa- 
tions, and collections of objects of varied interest still 
owned by her family, that few people could be more 
fitted to amuse and employ herself usefully when con- 
fined to the house. She was a skilled needlewoman ; ^ 
later on we shall find Queen Charlotte taking interest 
in her work, and asking if she was working anything 
new. She embroidered, worked in cloth, straw plaited, 
feather worked, made pillow lace, paper mosaic work, 
&e., dried flowers and ferns, painted on paper and silk, 
collected shells, fossils, coins, and was a connoisseur in 
china, &c. ; besides this, she was an excellent house- 
keeper, and as a specimen of the patience exercised in 
the careful preparation of household drugs in those 
days, I give the following receipe as made by her : — 

** Lavender Drops. 

** Six handfuls of lavender flowers stript from 
stalks, put them in a wide-mouth glass, and pour on 
them four quarts of the best spirit of wine, stop the 
glass very close with a double bladder tied fast down 
that nothing may breathe out, let it stand in a warm 
place six weeks, keep it circulating about, then distil 
it in a limbeck. When all is run off", put to this 
water sage flowers, rosemary flowers, bugloss flowers, 
betony flowers, burrage flowers, lily of the valley 

^ Her mother, Mrs. Girle, excelled in needlework, and in 1753 finished 
a bedquilt for her daughter, which had taken several years to work. It 
had her coat of arms in the centre, and crest (a wheat sheaO, in each 


1776 flowers, cowslip flowers, each a handful gathered in 
their seasons in dry weather ; let this stand six weeks, 
then put to it balm, motherwort, spike flowers ; cut some 
small bay leaves, orange leaves, and the flowers of each 
an ounce ; distil all these together again, then put in 
citron peel, lemon peel, dried single piony seed, and 
cinnamon, of each six drams, nutmeg, mace, candimums, 
cubels, yellow saunders, of each half an ounce, lignum 
aloes, one dram ; make these into a fine powder and 
put them into glass, then take juinbes,^ new and good, 
a pound stoned, and cut small, stop all quite close for 
six weeks more, shaking it often every day, then run 
it thro' a cotton bag, then put in prepared pearl two 
drams, ambergrease ditto, of saffron and saunders apd 
yellow saunders each an ounce, put these in a bag and 
hang them in the water, and close up the glass well ; 
at three weeks' end it will be fit to use. 

" N.B. — When you find any indisposition, or fear 
of any fit, take a small spoonful with a lump of sugar ; 
it helps all palsies of what kind to cure/* 

She also adds that in 1 782 she had still some drops 
made years before by her father-in-law, Mr. Powys, 
made by this receipt, and notes, " They are far superior 
to any one buys ; " so they ought to be, for they con- 
tained thirty-two ingredients, and took twenty-one 
weeks to make ! 

1776. — Mr. Pratt' left my brother this March, 
having been with him seven years and some months ; 
he soon after went to Cambridge. The parting was a 
most melancholy one on both sides, as I believe never 

^ A fruit with a stone. 

' Only son of Lord Camden, the Lord Chancellor, pupil to Rev. 
Thomas Powys at Fawley Rectory, Bucks. 


was there a tutor and pupil who had a more sincere 1776 
affection for each other. 

On the Queen's birthday Mr. Hanger,^ brother to 
Lord Coleraine, was drest in a sky-blue Paduasoie. the 
seams work'd with gold, gold cuffs and waistcoat, a 
velvet muff trimmed with cheneal blonde, and long 
streamers of the same, a large white feather in his hat ; 
and the next summer another standard for dress, Mr. 
Bamfield * (now Sir Charles), at Exeter Races, had a 
blue trimm'd with Devonshire point, and olives of fine 
pearl ; the coat cost ;^8oo. 

When in London this spring (1776) we had the 
very high entertainment, at a private concert, of hear- 
ing the celebrated Mrs. Sheridan sing many songs, 
accompanied by Giardini on the violin. I had never 
had that pleasure since she was Miss Linley ; was then 
charmed, but more so now. I think indeed her voice, 
person, and manner are more than one generally sees 
combined, and then her being so totally unaffected, 
render each ten times as pleasing as otherwise they 
would be. 

Jtme 1776. — Tho' we never have any friends at 
Hard wick that we don't take them to see Caversham 
Lodge,* yet I've not here mentioned it, as I knew it 
was to undergo many alterations ; those are nearly 
finished, and from always being a pleasing, 'tis now 
a very fine place, the situation beautiful, and these 
grounds laying out were the first performance of the 
since so celebrated Brown, who made a just tho' droll 
observation on the vast number of trees of an amazing 

^ George Hanger, last Lord Coleraine, an early boon companion of 
the Prince Regent, nicknamed "The Hanger On." 

'Sir Charles Bamfylde, ancestor of Baron Poltimore. 

' Then the seat of second Lord Cadogan, now of W. H. Craw- 
shay, Esq. 



1776 growth all through the whole spot, **that it was im- 
possible to see the trees for wood." Indeed they stood 
so thick that this was literally true, they hiding each 
other. But by taking some down and leaving con- 
spicuous the most noble, he has made it one of the 
finest parks imaginable, and at the time of the white- 
thorns being in blow, which at Caversham are by far 
the oldest and most beautiful I ever saw, 'tis hardly 
possible to describe the scene it offers. THie terrace 
at Caversham (next to Lord Lincoln's), Tve heard is 
the finest in England. On this stands the house, now 
white, formerly of brick and infinitely larger than at 
present ; you enter a charming hall (lately new), the 
old hall now a very elegant library, which you go 
through to a breakfast-room adjoining the saloon, in 
both of which are many good pictures, but the drawing- 
room beyond the saloon is one of the most pleasing 
apartments I ever saw, being fitted up with the English 
tapestry, which in most people's judgment exceeds the 
Gobelin. This history is a pilgrimage to Mecca, the 
camels, horses, dogs, amazingly well executed, the 
attitudes of the people fine, the colours of the finest 
tints, and all the figures of a pleasing size. Over the 
chimney-piece is a piece of the same, which represents 
a Sultan going into the private apartments of his 
women, his handkerchief in his hand to cast at the 
favoured one, an attendant behind, and a most beautiful 
girl holding up a festoon curtain through which he is 
to enter. This piece is reckoned inimitable ; in short, 
the whole does great credit to Saunders. There is a 
little fire-screen of it, groups of flowers which show the 
different kinds of tapestry. From this room you go 
through a pretty lobby into the eating-room, a very 
good one. Among the pictures is a remarkable one 


which belonged to General Husk, who made a present 1776 
of it to the family, as 'tis taken from a circumstance in 
the Duke of Marlborough s wars in which General 
Cadogan^ was present. The Duke, General, &c., are 
on horseback in conference with the French General, 
and the Duke has dropped his glove which his aide-de- 
camp is dismounting to pick up, and mark privately 
the spot, as they had before agree'd that just where 
that fell he would have the battle. . . . 



We have some years wished to see Stourhead, so 
at last suddenly fix'd on the 5th of August, the four- 
teenth anniversary of our wedding-day ; our party 
small, Mr. Annesley, my brother,* Mr. Powys, and 
myself in two phaetons. We call'd at our friends the 
Rushs of Heckfield; their place a very pretty situation, 
close to two pleasing parks. Lord Rivers', and his 
brother's. General Pitt Basingstoke is only ten miles 
from thence. We got too early there to remain the 
night, and as we found afterwards, too late to reach 
Overton, eight miles farther. Fortunately the road was 
good and safe, as we were literally benighted travellers 
in an unknown country ; many times I could not see 
any horses to the phaeton. We sent one of the ser- 
vants on for a light, and so by the light of a lanthorn 
we were ushered into the town at near eleven. The 

' William Cadogan, first Earl, succeeded the Duke of Marlborough 
as Field- Marshal. 

' Rev. T. Powys, her brother-in-law, always styled " brother." 


^n^^ next morning we pass'd the house of Capt. Jennings 
at Laverstock, near that a house and mills of a Mr. 
Portal, at which is made the Bank paper.^ Near the 
town of Whitchurch, in Hampshire, is the seat of 
Lord Portsmouth, caird Hurstbourne, a large and very 
ancient pile, standing in a park eight miles in circum- 
ference, but at present not one modern improvement 
about its environs ; we then pass'd a hunting-seat of 
Mr. Delm6's named Redrive ; and seven miles from 
Salisbury, the spot where Lord Holland's house was 
burnt down the year before. We had breakfast at 
Andover, and got to the above-mention'd city (Salis- 
bury), by three. Tho' we had all been there often, 
'twas agreed to spend that evening in a review of it. 
We of course laid out money in the famous steel-work 
of this place, and paid as much again for it as in 
London, at which place they have told us they could 
not even make a pair of scissors. On Wednesday 
morning we went three miles on the other side of 
Salisbury to see Longford Castle, the seat of the Earl 
of Radnor, situated in a pleasing valley, the river 
Avon running thro' the garden. The house, built in 
the reign of James I.,* is in a triangular form, round 
towers at each angle, which are the eating - room, 
library, and chapel, these rooms are octagon in the 
inside ; there is a fine gallery ; the fitting up and 
pictures of that only, is said to have cost ;^ 10,000 ; at 
each end are the two celebrated pictures of Claude 
Lorraine, of the rising and setting sun, amazing fine 
landscapes indeed, and which we went on purpose to 
see ; but there are many of the most capital masters 

^ Still made there. 

' Long before this, in 1591, by Sir T. Gorges, but enlarged by late 
Lord Radnor. 


dispersed all over the house, some inimitably fine; a 1776 
boy, whole length, by Rubens, in the breakfast-room, 
is almost life itself; but I cannot enumerate half, for 
tho' there is a catalogue to every room, we could not 
allow ourselves time to see them with just attention, 
not having imagined this house" near so much worth 
seeing as it really is, and from its triangular form 'tis 
so singular^ (there being but one more in England, built 
by the same person, six miles distant), that it has an 
agreeable effect ; it neither looks modern or ancient 
but between both ; stands in the middle of the garden, 
only one step from the ground, so that you may in- 
stantly be out of doors. The park is fine, the environs 
in taste, the furniture elegant, the pictures a most 
noble collection, so that we were quite pleased that 
Claude Lorraine had tempted us these three miles 
out of our first proposed excursion. We returned back 
thro* Salisbury, and so to the inn at Wilton,* where 
we breakfasted, as we could not resist seeing Lord 
Pembroke's, tho' we all had often been there before ; 
indeed I fancy few people pass by, as at the porter s 
lodge, where he desired us to set down our names and 
the number of our company, we saw by the book there 
had been to see it the last year 2324 persons. Merely 
to see, 'tis certainly one of the finest sights in England ; 
but to reside at, 'tis too grand, too gloomy, and what 
I style most magnificently uncomfortable, the situation 
bad, the rooms, except one, too small, and I want 
three or four more considerable ones. Were I Lord 
Pem broke,'' Td have two superb galleries, one for 

^ It was built after the model of the Castle of Uraniberg, designed by 
Tycho Brahe. 

^ Seat of Earl Pembroke. 

' Wilton has been much altered since this account was written, at the 
beginning of the nineteenth century by Wyatt, and since. 


1776 pictures, the other for statues, busts, &c., of which 
many here it seems are nowhere else in the world 
to be met with ; they would then appear with advan- 
tage, whereas now the whole house gives one an idea 
of a statuary's shop. *Tis universally allowed that 
the one grand apartment^ I before mention'd is the 
noblest can be seen — 60 feet by 30 and 30 feet high. 
The celebrated family picture by Vandyke every one 
has heard of if not seen — 20 feet long, 1 2 feet high — 
contains thirteen figures large as life, and at the farther 
end of the room one could imagine them animated. 
'Tis well known that of late years the most capital 
pictures of the best masters have been brought into 
England ; many indeed were taken away in Charles 
I. s time, but now there's hardly a gentleman's seat 
without a good collection. At Wilton they are fine 
indeed, tho' I think a good deal hurt by being too 
highly varnish'd in a late cleaning. The building was 
begun in the reign of Henry VIII., the great quad- 
rangle finished in that of Edward VI., and the porch 
design'd by Hans Holbein ; the hall-side being burnt 
down, was again finished by Inigo Jones, 1640. 

From Lord Pembroke's we went to Fonthill, the 
seat of Mr. Beckford, now a minor. The old house 
was burnt down about twenty years ago,* and this 
just finish'd as this young gentleman's father (the 
great Beckford, as he is usually styled), died. 'Tis 
a large stone house, eight rooms on the principal 
floor, but, as a contrast to Lord Radnor's, which we 
had that morning admir'd for being so near the 
garden, the ground apartments at Fonthill ^ by a most 

* Called the Double Cube. * June 1755. 

^ Cost Alderman Beckford £2^0,000. His son sold it and built the 
still more magnificent Abbey, commenced in 1796. 


tremendous flight of steps are, I believe, more distant 1776 
from the terrace on which the house stands than the 
attic storey of Longford Castle ; and the housekeeper 
seems to show it to a disadvantage, I think, taking 
us under these steps through a dark and gloomy 
hall, from which she mounted us to the second storey 
of bed-chambers first. The state bed and furniture 
crimson velvet, gold frames to the chairs, tables, 
and cornice to the bed. Mrs. Beckford's dressing- 
room has in it numbers of superb and elegant nick- 
nacks. From thence we descended to the principal 
floor, where is displayed the utmost profusion of mag- 
nificence, with the appearance of immense riches, 
almost too tawdrily exhibited. There are many good 
pictures and many very indifferent. Cassaulis I never 
admire ; the best at Fonthill are of the small kind, 
fit only for lady s cabinets ; of these there are many 
capital ones. The chimney-pieces all over the house 
are elegant to a degree ; even those in the attics must 
have cost an immense sum, all of statuary or Sienna 
marble ; but what hurts the eyes most exceedingly is 
that every hearth, even the best apartments, are com- 
mon black and white, which seems such a saving of 
expense in the very article where profusion has been 
so lavished that 'tis perfectly amazing. A fine grove 
of oaks, with clumps of evergreens on the left of the 
house, is very picturesque, and there is a fine piece 
of water, otherwise the situation is disagreeable.^ 

From hence we went to dine at Hendon, the 
borough which was then so talked of on General Smith's 
account, then in the King s Bench for bribery there. 
*Tis a horrid, poor, thatch'd, dirty-looking village, not 
a tolerable house in the place ; we could hardly pro- 

* William Beckford shifted the site to build his splendid Abbey. 


1776 cure a dinner. We intended laying at the inn at 
Stourton, built by Mr. Hoare for the company that 
comes to see his place, but to our great mortification, 
when we got there at near ten o'clock, it was full, 
and we oblig'd to go on to Meer, a shocking little 
town three miles off. There too the best inn was filled. 
The other, or rather ale-house, was bad indeed, but 
the landlord so anxious to accommodate us with beef 
steaks or anything of that kind for supper, that, 
as we could not do better, we laugh'd ourselves into 
good-humour, tho' his only parlour, the man said, was 
taken by two gentlemen from the other inn, belated 
too, and whom he begged we would join, he was sure 
they would be willing ; but as we imagined the gentle- 
men, like ourselves, liked their own company, and might 
not be of the landlord s sentiments, we stuff d ourselves 
into the bar-room till bed, when the above heroes were 
so kind as to resign the best bed, as the maid styled it to 
me, and getting two more in the village, we did toler- 
ably, and in the morn returned to Stourhead, which 
answered every difficulty we had met with the pre- 
ceding evening, as both house and grounds are so 
vastly well worth seeing. The inn I mentioned is 
just at the entrance of the garden. We there left 
our horses and carriages, and walk'd for about two 
miles ; the pleasure-ground in all is seven ; Alfred's 
Tower, at the extent one way, which is seen for miles 
round Stourhead. The first building after the gar- 
deners cottage is the Bristol Cross, ^ a present from that 
city to Mr. Hoare, a very light Gothic structure, but 
its kings and queens in the niches round it would, 

* Erected in that city in 1 373 in gratitude for grants made to the city 
by Edward III. Contains eight statues, four last added in 1633. Removed 
in 1733, 3i^d sold to Mr. Henry Hoare. 


in my opinion, have look'd better of the original stone 1776 
colour than so ornamented with red, blue, and gilt 
clothing; but still 'tis pretty through this profusion 
of finery, and I believe it may in some measure be 
more strikingly gaudy from its nearness to one ; could 
it be placed on an eminence at a little distance, it 
surely would have a more pleasing effect. Fifty 
men are constantly employed in keeping the pleasure- 
grounds, rides, &c., in order, in all about 1000 acres. 
It was a park when Mr. Hoare purchased it of Lord 
Stourton, but all the buildings and plantations are the 
present owners own doing, ^ without any assistance 
but common workmen to plan or lay out the whole 
seven miles' extent, nor could Brown have executed 
it with more taste and elegance. Nature indeed had 
been profuse in giving a spot the most beautifully 
irregular, without which no grounds can be laid out 
pleasing to the eye. These were nothing more than 
naked hills and dreary valleys, which now are so 
beautifully adorn'd by art, assisting Nature with trees, 
her greatest ornament, where hills and water only were 
before. This indeed might be discovered by the 
disagreeableness of the country the instant you are 
out of Mr. Hoare's domains. The next building after 
the Cross is a greenhouse, prettily adorn'd outside 
by stone or burnt cinders from the glass-houses at 
Bristol, the inside black gravel stones mixed in the 
mortar ; it looks like pounded flints and has a pretty 
effect. We then pass'd over what the gardener 
called a Palladian bridge, but he certainly mistook, 
as I think Palladio's bridges were covered over. 
This is open top and sides, pretty at a distance ; 
when near, the idea of going over a kind of ladder 

^ Mr. Richard Hoare, afterwards made a Baronet in 1786. 


1776 only is frightful. Another party of company could 
not bring themselves to venture, but 'tis not so bad 
after you have brought yourself to venture a few 
of its steps, tho' its perpendicular appearance and 
seeing the water through at first looks formidable. 
We saw many pretty seats at the stems of trees of 
stones piled like rock-work on each other. The next 
building is the Pantheon,^ in which are seven niches 
with statues large as life, over them seven alto-relievos. 
From the Pantheon colonnade you have a fine view of 
a constant cascade which is very beautiful ; from this 
we went to the Temple of Apollo.^ On the outside 
niches with statues, on the inside a gilded sun with 
a skylight to illuminate it. From thence we crossed 
another bridge leading to a stone alcove, then to the 
Temple of Flora. In general these edifices are so 
alike at all gardens, and the seats and buildings here 
put one greatly in mind of Stowe, if it were not for 
the much more beautiful spots each is here erected on, 
to what that flat situation can boast. The Turkish 
tent at Mr. Hoare's is very pretty ; 'tis of painted 
canvas, so remains up the whole year; the inside 
painted blue and white in mosaic. We thought it 
best for our horses to take them at this time to 
Alfred's Tower, three miles off, that they might again 
rest while we walk'd the remainder of the tour. They 
sent a guide with us over the top of the hill, which 
commands so many fine views of this now cultivated 
spot. One of them looks down an immense valley, 
where is the head of the river Stour. It rises in six 
different springs at a piece of rock-work where the 
figure of Neptune is striking, and the river gushing 

^ A copy of the famous Roman temple. 

' Temple of the Sun, designed after that at Baalbec. 


out. The tower^ is lately finish'd, cost above jC 4000, 1776 
yet we thought it the least worth seeing of any one 
building at Stourhead. It being brick in a country 
of stone is rather wonderful. The form triangular, 
150 feet 10 inches high, one of the angles round a 
stone pillar is a spiral staircase of 225 stone steps 
before one gains the top, and then there being no seat 
or enclosed room, only an iron at such a distance that 
people may just pass in walking round, and those who 
can, may look down the tower from top to bottom on 
the inside. It does take in an immense tract of 
prospect, and our guide informed us of twenty different 
things he saw and meant us to see. The tower was 
erected in honour of Alfred the Great, as an inscrip- 
tion over the entrance mentions that on this summit 
his standard^ was erected against the Danes. 

After seeing the tower we descended the hill, and 
by the banks of the river came to the Convent, an 
elegant building, painted glass in the upper part of the 
windows in miniature. Nuns in their different habits 
in panels round the room, very pretty Gothic elbow- 
chairs painted in mosaic brown and white. Two very 
ancient pictures found in the ruins of Glastonbury 
Abbey — the Wise Mens Offerings — well painted. 
From this place we came back to the house, again 
put up the horses while we saw indoors, which in 
itself answers the situation, and contains a thousand 
curiosities of furniture, pictures, &c. You enter a 
noble hall, round this in panels are whole-length por- 
traits, very capital ones, one in particular by Carlo 
Maratti. He is drawing the portrait of a young noble- 
man standing by him, other figures behind as large as 

^ Built by Henry Hoare, Esq. The hill is 800 feet above the sea. 

* In A.D. 879. 


1776 life. Opposite the chimney, Mr. Hoare, when a youth, 
on horseback. There are ten rooms on the principal 
floor, the saloon finely proportioned, 50 by 30, and 30 
high. The paintings here large and fine, some his- 
torical. In the third room shown is the so-much- 
talked-of cabinet ^ that once belong d to Pope Sixtus, 
which Mr. Hoare purchased at an immense sum, so 
great that he says he never will declare the sum. It 
is, indeed, most beautifully ornamented, as well as 
valuable, for on the outside are many fine gems. A 
border goes round the frame four feet from the ground, 
here set in frames. Pope Sixtus's picture, and those 
of his family, drawn, you may be sure, after he was 
raised from his original obscurity. Some time after 
the purchase was made, in some inner private drawers 
were found seventy-two other miniatures, some in the 
old English dress, others of Spain and Italy. The date 
on this curious antique cabinet is 1677. ^^ ^ closet out 
of this room is a most inimitable portrait of Titian by 
himself, at ninety-two years old. Round this are hung 
the seventy-two miniatures above mentioned. There 
are a number of fine paintings, and they are hung in a 
most clever manner, the frames having hinges fasten d 
to the walls on one side as a door is, and may be 
pulled forwards as the light is required. The best 
picture at Stourhead is, I think, over the chimney in 
the picture gallery, a Rembrandt — Elijah restoring the 
widow s son to life, Elijah as large as life, and a most 
striking figure. There are many of Rembrandt, 
Canaletti, Claude Lorraine. There are two from the 

^ This cabinet was left by a nun, the last of Pope Sixtus' family, to a 
convent at Rome, where it was purchased by Mr. Hoare. It is made of 
ebony, agate, and lapis-lazuli, fronted by pillars of precious stones, and 
inlaid with gold. 


last master by Wotton, well executed; one fine land- 1776 
scape by Gainsborough, of Bath, some cattle of 
Cuyp's. The state bed and furniture are of India 
painted taffeta. In the eating-room is a most curious 
emboss'd piece of plate,^ a present from the City of 
London to Sir Richard Hoare when Mayor, intended 
for the sideboard, but 'tis now in a frame over a table, 
on which stands three fine pieces of the Sevres manu- 
factory, reckoned superior to Dresden ; 'tis immensely 
dear. I forgot to mention a sweet picture of Angelica 
Kauffman's, a lady in a white and gold Turkish habit, 
working at a tambour. But for all my encomiums 
about this charming place, I cannot think it equal to a 
situation in our own neighbourhood. I mean Park 
Place, ^ General Conway s, which has more of the soft 
and beautiful, with the addition of a fine country every 
way round, while the charms of Stourhead are literally 
confined within itself. We dined that day at Dedford 
Marsh, and from thence to Amesbury, so dreary a 
road as quite from Mr. Hoare's I never went over ; 
dismal downs, not a cottage or tree to enliven the 
scene. Here and there a melancholy looking shepherd, 
attending, as they told us, flocks, sometimes of three 
to five thousand ; some farms having two or three such 

When we got to Stonehenge, we drove up and got 
out of the carriages to see '*this stupendous piece of 
antiquity," as Dr. Stukeley stiles it ; the number of 
stones, he says, are 140. Our coachman informed us it 
was impossible to tell them, and no one ever did, as 
they would actually die if they attempted it. Our 
sagacious servant told us "the Devil brought them 

* Represents the story of Cyrus and Queen Ismaris. 

* Park Place, near Henley-on-Thames, Berks. 


1776 there from Ireland, tied up in a withe, which breaking, 
is the reason they are so scattered, and one fell just at 
the river at Amesbury." He told us this with the 
gravest countenance, and seem'd angry at our laughing. 
We had only one mile to Amesbury from Stonehenge. 
We were this night too unfortunate, for being late, the 
inn was full, and as we were settling with the landlady 
to get us beds at private lodgings, our servants came 
and whisper d us that the two gentlemen from the inn 
at Meare were now in that front room. We then 
look'd in, and so they were. Sitting with candles, we 
saw our former night s facetious landlord's '* two agree- 
able gentlemen,*' were Mr. Walpole^ and Mr. Adams, 
who we were exceedingly well acquainted with. You 
may be sure we now made ourselves known, and 
passed a very pleasant evening with them, laughing 
exceedingly that none of us chose the evening before 
to join company. The Duke of Queensberry's seat 
borders on this town ; seems a most dismal, dreary 

We left Amesbury next day, came most shocking 
roads thro' a new turnpike to Kingsclare. On the top 
of Kingsclare Hill we saw the clouds pass below in 
the valley with great velocity ; rather shocking, but 
that hill is a vast height, looks very romantic with the 
big town just under it. We see this hill, you know, 
from Straw Hall, in Hardwick Woods. We din'd 
at the town, and reach'd home that evening, perfectly 
pleased with our excursion, and perfectly happy to 
return here. As you know, tho' we have great pleasure 
in seeing fine places, we are so vain as to think few 
surpass our own, I mean in natural beauties. Hard- 
wick's merits is all its own, never has been indebted 

^ Horace Walpole and Adams, the architect. 


to modern improvements, and in this age may, for ^77^ 
that reason, be thought more uncommon, as the rage 
for laying out grounds makes every nobleman and 
gentleman a copier of their neighbour, till every fine 
place throughout England is comparatively, at least, 
alike! Miles travelled. 174. 

October iith, 1776. — From my brother's at Fawley 
we went to see Hurley Priory,^ Berks, an immense old 
white house near Marlow. Formerly it belong'd, with 
a vast tract of land, to Lord Lovelace, but now is in 
possession of a Mr. Wilcox, who purchased it, with 
little of the ground remaining except the gardens. 
This gentleman is a nephew^ of Bishop Wilcox (Ro- 
chester), is a man curious in antiquity, and seems 
deserving of so fine an old mansion by the care he 
seems to take of it. I own I never was better pleased 
with any house I ever saw. You enter from the 
garden one of the most pleasing halls you can imagine, 
vastly large, amazingly light, in which is a fine stair- 
case, with a gallery looking down into the hall ; the 
rooms all large, windows immensely so, all glazed with 
a multiplicity of little panes, but no casements, so that 
'tis the most cheerful house possible. In a large draw- 
ing-room upstairs is the fine paintings of Salvator 
Rosa,' every panel a distinct landscape, shades of 

^ A Benedictine foundation, on the remains of which Sir Richard 
Lovelace built or added to largely. He accompanied Sir Francis Drake, 
and was fortunate, capturing a galleon containing much Spanish gold. 
His son, in 1626, was created Baron Lovelace. 

^ Mrs. Powys is wrong. He was son of the Bishop, and inherited it 
in 1 791 from his aunt, Mrs. Williams, who, winning two prizes in a 
lottery, one of j^soo and one of j£2o,ooo, was enabled to buy it. Her 
daughter, Mrs. Lewin, dying, the place went to the nephew. 

' These panels, 32 inches long, 14 broad, green, grey, and brown, 
lights in silver lacquer. In modem times these pictures have been attri- 
buted wrongly to Pietro Tempesta. Mr. Lane, of Badgemore, bought 
some ; Mr. Budd, of Newbury, thirty panels ; also Mr. F. Maitland 
some— Vide Gentlemafis MagoMine^ 1731 to 1868. 


1776 greens and browns, the large trees inimitable. Sal- 
vator lived in Charles II. s time. He never was in 
England ; but this work of his was sent over in 
separate panels. In one of the windows in this room 
are 365 panes of glass. The cellars of this house 
have long been famous for their goodness, tho' they 
are uncommonly so, but because in them was plann'd 
the Revolution. The servant informed us two kings 
had dined there. They might indeed, as they are 
light, answerable to the rest of the house ; ^ but we 
could see no reason for such an entertainment. The 
following inscription is plac*d against a wall : — 

"The Priory of St. Mary's, Huriey, founded in the reign of 
William the Conqueror, by Geoffrey and Lecelina Mandeville, a.d. 

Mrs. Powys' account of this most interesting place, 
about which a volume could be written, ends here. 
An inscription in these vaults existed till 1831, now 
removed, to this effect : — 

" Mortality and Vicissitude to all, 

" Be it remembered that the Monastery of Lady Place, of which 
this place is the burial cavern, was founded at the time of the great 
Norman Revolution, by which Revolution the whole state of England 
was changed. 

" Be it remembered that in this place, 600 years after, the Re- 
volution of 1688 was b^un. This house was then in the possession 
of Lord Lovelace, by whom private meetings of the nobility were 
assembled in this vault, and it is said that several consultations for 
calling in the Prince of Orange were held in this recess, on which 
account this vault was visited by that powerful Prince after he had 
ascended the throne." 

* They were visited by William III. after his accession, and George 
III. and his Queen in 1785. 


When William the Third arrived in England, Lord 1776 
Lovelace, with seventy followers and gentry and 
others, rode to welcome the King, but were stopped 
at Cirencester, where Lovelace was taken prisoner, 
and young Bulstrode Whitelock, grandson of Sir Bul- 
strode Whitelock, of Fawley Court, Bucks, and son of 
Mr. William Whitelock, of Phyllis Court, Oxon, was 
shot, and died November 14, 1688. On Lord Love- 
lace's liberation from prison, he was made captain of 
the band of gentlemen pensioners to William III. 
He lived in such a costly state that he involved him- 
self in debt, and Lady Place was sold in two portions 
under a decree in Chancery. The direct title was 
extinct in 1 736, but the present Earl of Lovelace, by 
his first marriage with Ada Byron, daughter of the 
poet, she being nearest heir to the Lovelace s line, 
assumed the title. 

In 1838 three bodies of monks, clad in their Bene- 
dictine habit, were found in the vaults, and reinterred in 
the churchyard. The fittings of the house were sold in 
December 1837. Mr. Budd bought staircase, columns, 
hall fireplaces. The house was pulled down, and mate- 
rials sold by public auction. There is a picture of the 
house in " Illustrated Thames," by G. Ley land, pub- 
lished in 1897 by G. Newnes. The vaults of the 
priory, refectory (now a stable), some out-buildings, 
ponds, and walls, are the sole representatives of the 
once magnificent mansion. The tithe-barn and ancient 
pigeon-cot of the monks exist as well, whilst the 
Church of Saint Mary,^ built in 1086, is deeply in- 
teresting. To return to Mrs. Powys. 

^ Mentioned as a church in Domesday Book, probably then rebuilt 
and freshly endowed by Geoffrey de Mandeville. 


1776 Account of a Gala Week in the Neighbour- 



January 1777 (which I wrote of in two letters 
to Mrs. ). 

December 1776. — But I must take up no more 
time, my dear, on other subjects, as we have one in 
this county at present will furnish out a letter of 
length sufficient to tire you. Tis of a play to be per- 
formed by Lord Villiers^ and some company at their 
house about ten days hence. You know Lady Grandi- 
son,^ his mother, who married Sir Charles Montagu, 
took Phyllis Court (Oxon) of Mr. Freeman* some 
time since. The Villiers live .with them, and their 
house is generally full, and to make it gayer than 
usual this Christmas, they talk'd of performing " The 
Provoked Husband,'* at first, I imagine, intending the 
audience to be merely their own family ; but such 
interest has been making among people of fashion 
for admittance, that at present 'tis the sole object of 
the neighbourhood for miles round. We thought 
ourselves not the least likely to be of the fortunate 
number invited, for, as in their case, there must be 
limitations, they properly give none but to those they 
visit (and you may remember when first Lady Grandi- 
son came we never went, as we imagined a family so 
deeply engaged in the fashionable game of loo, could 
never wish an intimacy with one who never play'd at 
all) ; but my brother * at Fawfey is verj^ intimate 
there, who as a clergyman may, you know, easily keep 

^ Afterwards Earl Grandison. 
^ Elizabeth, Countess of Grandison in her own right. 
■ Sambrook Freeman, of Fawley Court, Bucks. 
* Rev. Thomas Powys, rector of Fawley, Bucks. 


clear of gaming, even with the approbation of the 1776 
most polite. When Lord Villiers sent him his ticket, 
there were some for us, but as my father chose not to 
be in the scene of gaiety, the tickets were returned, 
but Lord Villiers d^sir'd the Camden family to be 
invited, for whom he'd send more. 

The plan of the week is as follows : Three 
nights the play is to be performed. The first only 
as rehearsal, on Saturday the 4th, it being young 
Mr. Hodges' birthday, and the day of Mr. Hodges' 
tenants' feast, to whom 'tis supposed 'twill be a high 
entertainment, and perfect the performers for the 
grand exhibitions of thfe Monday and Friday follow- 
ing, when there are to be balls, and supper given by • 
Lord Villiers at the '*Bell,"^ at Henley, after the 
plays, and a grand ball at Freeman's on the Wednes- 
day after the plays. The famous Monsieur Tessier 
is to perform Pygmalion ; if you inquire what theatre, 
I must inform you a very neat one, fitted up by Lord 
Villiers at Bowney ^ (Mr. Hodges') — a barn and coach- 
house laid together, hung with green baize, the seats 
the same, scenes from the B right helmstone Company, 
and the whole to be lighted with wax. It holds 300, 
so that number of tickets is given for each night. 
My brother has much to do in it, as they begg'd him 
to write two prologues, one for the play and another 
for Pygmalion, besides to assist Mrs. Howe (sister to 
Lord Howe), in prompting them. Hedley's, the inn 
where the balls are to be, is already so fully engaged, 
that he has bespoke forty private beds in the town ; 

^ The *^ Bell " Inn is now the Royal Grammar School, an interesting 
building, with a curious secret chamber on the roof. It was a great 
coaching inn, once had stables for a hundred horses. Prince Rupert 
during the Civil War had a spy hung on the tree still opposite it. 

- Bolney Court, Oxon. 


1776 the other great inn,^ too, entirely bespoke, and every 
lodging in Henley ; fourteen and sixteen guineas given 
for the three nights. A band of ten musicians have 
been down at Sir Charles Montagu s these ten days, 
the best hands from Italy. 

Lady Grandison was telling my brother yesterday 
they had about thirty set down to dinner every day 
in the parlour. **And yet, Mr. Powys, you shall 
judge if my larder will not hold out. Tve three does, 
a warrant gone for a fourth, three brace of pheasants, 
eight hares, six brace whistling plovers, twelve couple 
woodcocks, ten brace partridges, a peafowl, two guinea- 
fowls, snipes and larks without number, and most of 
'these sent for the occasion, as I suppose, without 
names ! " This is all I can send you word about it 
at present ; only that poor Sir Charles Montagu and 
Garrick (who was to have been there), are both ill 
with the gout ; but as I'm certain female curiosity will 
wish for the conclusion. Til write again when I return 
to Hardwick, till when I am at this and every season, 


most affectionately your Caroline Powys. 

January 13///, 1777 

1777 And now, my dear, for my promise, which I fear'd 
with all our airy schemes of pleasure would have been 
buried in a deep snow, for just at this time last year 
how many weeks were we kept prisoners, and now we 
live in continual apprehensions as it fell daily, and 
the very night before we were to set out, so much as 
to fill up the track of our usual way to Fawley, how- 

* The ** Red Lion." At this other historic inn Shenstone wrote his 
celebrated lines " On an Inn," on a pane of glass. The great Duke of 
Marlborough had a room there, fitted for himself in his journeys to and 
from Blenheim. 


ever, by going some miles round we got into the ^777 
Henley turnpike, and at last, to our great joy, safe to 
my brother's,* where we heard of every house in the 
neighbourhood being full of company, even Freeman's- 
were obliged to put up five new additional beds ; yet 
we afterwards heard of many tickets returned on 
account of the weather, which was indeed bad to a 
degree. The Saturday, as I said before, was only a 
rehearsal before Mr. Hodges* tenants, and as they 
found it was wished, many of the town people of 
Henley, from which it was about three miles ; how- 
ever, the house was filled even that night. On Mon- 
day, the 5th, we got there in time, you may be certain. 
The two first rows were left, by desire of those who 
were first there, for the Grandison family, and tho' 
Lord Villiers' servants said he had express orders 
none should be kept, however, common politeness was 
sure to counterbalance such a command. The house 
was very soon filled, and you'd hardly imagine such 
an audience in the country. As the company was 
nearly the same both nights, Til set down those I 
knew to be there on either, tho' there were numbers 
of fine men behind, whose faces I was not acquainted 
with. The Duke of Argyle,' Lord Frederick Caven- 
dish,* Count Brule, the Lords Tyrconnel, Beauchamp,* 
Harrowby,® Sefton, Rivers,^ Camden,^ Macclesfield,* 
Barrymore,*^ Parker,^* General Conway, ^^ Sir George 

^ Fawley Rectory. ^ Fawley Court. 

•** John, fifth Duke of Argyll. 
* Field- Marshal, son of third Duke of Devonshire. 
^ Third Earl Beauchamp. 

•^ First Earl Harrowby, then renting Shiplake Court from Henry 
Constantinc Jennings. ^ First Earl. 

« Lord High Chancellor. • Thomas, third Earl. 

*® Richard, the celebrated Earl of Barrymore. 

" George, Viscount Parker. " Of Park Place. 


1777 Warren, Sir Thomas Stapleton,^ Sir Michael Fleming, 
Sir Harry Englefield,* Sir George Beaumont ; ^ the 
Ladies Grandison, Aylesbury/ Egremont, Hertford, 
Macclesfield, Villiers, Dowager, Tyrconnel, Sefton, 
Powis, Harrowby, Lady Almeria Carpenter, Lady 
Louisa Clayton,* Lady Caroline Herbert, Lady 
Harriot Herbert (daughters of Lady Powis), Lady 
Cecil Price, Lady M. Churchill, Lady Elizabeth 
Conway, Lady M. Parker, Lady Isabella Conway, 
Lady Warren, Lady Englefield, Lady Cornwall ; Sir 
Thos. Clarges, and the families of Onslow, Churchill, 
Con ways, Rivers ; John Pitts and General Pitts, 
Howes, Pratts, Claytons, Freemans, Prices,* Tufnels, 
Vanderstegens,^ Jennings,^ Eliots, Rices, Mortons, 
Stonors',^ Tilsons, Englefields, Norths, Monsons, 
Winfords,^® Herberts, &c., &c. The curtain drew up 
about half after six o'clock, when Lord Villiers did 
great justice to my brothers prologue, which was 
much applauded. The play really amazingly well 
done throughout. "Sir Francis Wronghead** inimi- 
tably ; *' Manley," as well as it could be possibly ; 
" Lord and Lady Townly " both shone. Miss 
Hodges, who is a most beautiful girl, had every 
advantage of dress, a pink satin suit of clothes, ele- 
gantly trimmed with gauze and flowers, all Lady 
Villiers* diamonds, valued at ;^ 12,000; four large 

* Of Grey's Court, Oxon. 

' Of Englefield House, Berks. 
' Seventh Baronet. 

* Wife of General Conway. 

* Wife of Sir William Clayton of Harleyford, Bucks, sister of George, 
Earl of Pomfret. 

* Sir Charles Price of Blounts Court, Oxon. 
^ Of Canons End, Oxon. 

' Shiplake Court and Shiplake House, Oxon. 

* Mr. Thomas Stonor of Stonor, Bucks. 
><> Of Thiames Bank, Marlow. 


bows making a complete stomacher, two of the same 1777 
as sleeve knots, a superb necklace and earrings, her 
head almost covered, and a girdle of jewels, the ends 
hanging down a quarter of a yard ; besides these a 
complete bouquet, so that her angelic form was as 
fine as it was beautiful. "Lady Grace "^ (a sweet 
girl), acted her part so well that I daresay she is the 
character in real life ; and I could not help supposing 
** Manley " really as much the lover as he appear d to 
be, especially as they had been in the same house for 
so many weeks. 

After the play, as I before informed you, was per- 
form'd, a piece, taken from Ovid's Pygmalion, wrote 
in French by the famed Rousseau,^ and Tessier spent 
some weeks with him, perfectly to comprehend the 
author, as he declar d he wrote it to express by action 
every passion to the eye. We had first my brother's 
second prologue, spoke by Lord Maiden,* and the 
audience a second time gave a great share of applause 
to both the speaker and writer. When the curtain 
draws up, Tessier (the Prince), is leaning on a table 
in the most melancholy mood, dress'd in a most superb 
habit. At the further end of the stage was a canopy 
and curtain of gold and silver gauze (which cost ;^io), 
behind which, on a rise of four steps was conceaFd his 
beautiful statue. He was, I suppose, twenty minutes 
in all the attitudes of tragic woe, deliberating whether 
he should withdraw the veil, so fearing the sight of 
this too lovely object. His powers are certainly asto- 
nishing ; 'tis said no one equals him. Some partial 
English flatter themselves their Garrick might come 
up to him. I own myself of that number ; but then 

^ Miss Clark. ^ Jean Jacques Rousseau. 

^ George, afterwards fifth Earl of Essex. 


1777 as not a perfect mistress of the French, I fear one's 
opinion would go for nothing, tho' he speaks so just 
and distinct, I understood by far the greater part of 
the whole. At last he ventures most gently to draw 
aside and fasten back the curtain, discovering a figure 
which seem'd to captivate the audience almost as much 
as it did the inamorated Pygmalion. Indeed she was 
the sweetest statue imaginable ; clothed in a white lute- 
string close-bodi'd, flowing train, her hair in ringlets 
down to her waist, just tied behind, a white fillet 
across her head, a long veil of white gauze button'd 
on the shoulder and one side. Her first appearance 
was in the finest attitude, leaning on a pedestal, one 
hand hanging over it, holding in both a wreath of 
flowers. Standing first in this posture almost ati hour, 
not her eyes (as far as one could perceive) mcyi/d. It 
was quite astonishing to her audience ; such claps you 
never heard, as between the woe and raptures of her 
now almost distracted lover. He once tried to proceed 
with his work, but throws away his implements as if 
fearful they must injure a frame so delicate. At last, 
by his prayer to Venus, she becomes animated, turns 
her head, moves a hand, and at last, with vast seeming 
apprehension, descends the steps. Her attitude so 
pleasing, his admiration 'tis not possible to express on 
paper. She speaks, he kneels down, grasps her hand, 
and while both seem under the most indescribable 
surprise, the curtain drops. It was really the finest 
scene imaginable, and you see avoided every indelicacy. 
Most of the company had privately expressed their 
apprehensions of, from the well-known story in Ovid, 
for the sake of our sweet actress, who was so much 
admir'd, that I found most were of my sentiments of 
its not being the thing for a girl of fashion to appear 


in an afifair of this very public nature. After the play i777 
we returned to Fawley, as my brother excus'd us to 
Lord VilHers for the ball that night, as I had then no 
young people. I also rather fear'd not being able to 
go thro' all the diversions of the week, and it was 
then twelve o'clock. The rest of the company (invited 
by his Lordship), went to the ball and supper at Hed- 
ley's, the inn at Henley.^ 

The next morning we expected Lord Camden, 
Mr, Pratt, and two of the young ladies, but unfor- 
tunately poor Miss Jenny had too bad a cold to 
venture, so my Lord stay'd till Thursday, in hopes 
she would then be better. Lady Camden, too, was 
not well enough to come down, the weather being 
terribly cold. 

On the Wednesday, Mr. and Miss Pratt, my 
brother, and ourselves got to Freemans' a little after 
eight. So great a crowd, or so fine a house ^ to dis- 
pose them in, you don't often see in the country. I 
need not mention the company, as it was nearly the 
same as that of Monday night, as they sent cards 
to all the people of fashion who were at the play. 
Their usual eating-room not being large enough, the 
supper was in the hall, so that we did not come in 
thro' that, but a window was taken out of the library, 
and a temporary flight of steps made into that, from 
which we passed into the green breakfast-room (that 
night the tea-room), thro' the pink paper billiard- 
room, along the saloon, into the red damask drawing- 
room. Though none set down, this room was soon 
so crowded as to make us return to the saloon. This 
likewise very soon fiU'd, and as the tea was carrying 
round, one heard from every one, ** Fine assembly," 

» The " Bell." '^ Fawley Court, Bucks. 


1777 ** Magnificent house," ** Sure we are in London." 
They danc'd in the saloon. No minuets that night ; 
would have been difficult without a master o( the 
ceremonies among so many people of rank. Two 
card-rooms, the drawing-room and eating-room. The 
latter looked so elegant lighted up ; two tables at loo, 
one quinze, one vingt-une, many whist. At one of 
the former large sums passed and repassed. I saw 
one (nameless here), lady of quality borrow ten pieces 
of Tessier within half-an-hour after she set down to 
vingt-une, and a countess at loo who ow'd to every 
soul round the table before half the night was over. 
They wanted Powys and I to play at **Iow loo," as 
they term'd it, but we rather chose to keep our fea- 
tures less agitated than those we saw around us, for 
I always observe even those who have it to lose have 
no less a tinge of the rouge in their countenances 
when fortune does not smile. Oh ! what a disfigur- 
ing thing is gaming, particularly to the ladies. The 
orgeat, lemonade, capillaire, and red and white negus, 
with cakes, were carried round the whole evening. 
At half an hour after twelve the supper was an- 
nounced, and the hall doors thrown open, on entering 
which nothing could be more striking, as you know 
*tis so fine a one, and was then illuminated by three 
hundred coloured lamps round the six doors, over 
the chimney, and over the statue at the other end. 
The tables were a long one down the room, termi- 
nated by a crescent at each end, and a crescent table 
against the two doors in the middle ; the windows 
were sideboards. The tables had a most pleasing 
effect, ornamented with everything in the confec- 
tionary way, and festoons and wreaths of artificial 
flowers prettily disposed ; all fruits of the season, as 


grapes, pines, &c. ; fine wines (Freeman is always 1777 
famous for) ; everything conducted with great ease — 
no bustle. Their servants are particularly clever on 
these occasions, indeed are annually used to it, and 
none of those of the company admitted, which gener- 
ally creates confusion. Niilety-two sat down to 
supper. Everybody seem'd surprised at entering the 
hall. The house had before been amazingly admir'd, 
but now there was one general exclamation of wonder. 
This, you may be certain, pleased the owners, par- 
ticularly as many of the nobility there now never saw 
it before. The once so beautiful Lady Almeria, I 
think, is vastly altered. She and Lady Harriot Her- 
bert had the new trimmings, very like bell-ropes with 
their tassels, and seemingly very inconvenient in 
dancing. -Lady Villiers had a very pretty ornament 
on, which was the girdle ** Lady Townly" wore, 
fastend round the robing of her gown, and hung 
down as a tippet. After supper they return'd to 
dancing, chiefly then cotillons, till near six. 

On the Thursday, we were hardly up and break- 
fasted at the genteel hour of three, when Lord Camden 
and his other daughter came from London, the latter 
with such a cough, that I was in a continual fright 
about her going ; but the disappointment of Freeman's 
ball had been so great. Lady Camden ventured to let 
her try for the last night, but she was really the next 
day infinitely mended. 

The Friday morn Henley town was just like any 
public place, such different sets of company walking 
about it. Never before was it so gay, or so much 
money spent there ; provisions rose each day immo- 
derately. The gentlemen walk'd down. (We were 
engaged in hair-dressing, of which fraternity five from 


1777 London were at Lady Grandison*s, three at Freeman's, 
and others in the town no doubt). In Henley our 
party meeting that of Lord VilHers, my brother told 
his Lordship he had sent to Lord Camden at his 
desire, who was happy in the thoughts of seeing their 
performance of that evening. My Lord Villiers said : 
— " Since they had been flatter d in having some little 
merit in the theatrical way, 'twas impossible but they 
must wish to have such an orator as Lord Camden 
approve if just, or blame with his unerring judgment 
if otherwise." My Lord, pleas'd with the compliment, 
returned one as flattering. The graces (as Chesterfield 
says), are never wanting to persons of true politeness. 
We dined early, and got to the theatre in time. Most 
of the same people of fashion as the first night, and 
the sweet little Lord Barrymore being very near us. 
From being so very young,^ my boy could not conceive 
to be of any consequence, and made all round us laugh 
by telling Lady Villiers he was much too small to be 
a Lord! Phil luckily is a great favourite with her 
Ladyship, otherwise he would have seen no more than 
you did, sitting just behind her head, whose feathers 
were full three quarters of a yard high. All the 
Conways, too, are so immensely tall ; one of the boys 
of an amazing height is to be a clergyman,^ and my 
brother telling him he must have all the sounding 
boards raised wherever he preached, it put Lord 
Camden in mind of a bon mot of Princess Amelia s, 
who asked a remarkably tall young man what he was 
intended for; he told her Highness, "the Church." 

* He was born in 1769, hence only eight years old then. Phil Powys 
was fourteen. 

' Edward Conway, one of seven sons of Earl Hertford, and nephew 
of General Conway of Park Place. 


** Oh, sir," replied the Princess, **you must mistake; 1777 
ifs certainly for the steeple V The performers again 
surprised the audience. It was indeed vastly well 
acted. Lord Villiers had a different and still finer 
dress, buttons and buckles quite in ton, viz., large to 
an excess, all the very fine men wear two watches — 
Lord Villiers, Lord Maiden, and Tessier had. The 
play over, we wondered not to hear the coaches call'd 
up, but were soon informed there was to be a dance. 
This, as there seem*d no performers, we all wonder'd 
at, but the curtain drawing up, three characters only 
appeared. Those, tho* disguised, we soon found were 
Tessier, Churchill, and Englefield. The first an ex- 
cellent figure as an old woman playing on the violin, 
the second, a girl with a brandy bottle, looking rather 
delicate, as Churchill is a pretty young man exceed- 
ingly fair, she and her pero danc'd xki^ fricassee, a most 
robust performance, an excellent burlesque on fine 
stage dances. Tessier who is a fine hand on the 
violin, play'd to them, and afterwards came forward, 
and in broken English said he knew not our language 
well enough to sing in that, but would with our leave 
give us a little French song made by himself since 
dinner, which he did in a most droll manner, sings 
well, and the thought was clever, the whole turning in 
compliment on the Grandison family and their neigh- 
bourhood, showing so splendid an audience as that he 
addressed. Everybody was much pleas d, particularly 
as none but the three concerned knew of it till the 
instant. All over, the performers joined the company, 
and compliments you may be sure were liberally 
bestow'd ; those of the morning between the Lords 
Villiers and Camden renewed and added to. The 
family insisted that none that night be excus'd from 


1777 ball or supper; we wanted to send Phil home (not 
because he has not yet learned as you may suppose of 
Gallini), but as too young ; but Lord Camden would 
have him at the whole, and introducing him to Lady 
Grandison she obligingly said she would not only 
now but always look on him as her particular guest. 
When the company was all got to the inn, tea was 
brought round the ball-room, a most comfortable thing 
after the play, tho' then twelve o'clock or later. The 
conversation was for some time on a subject you'd 
hardly imagine — robbery. Post-chaises had been stop- 
ped from Hodges to Henley about three miles ; but 
tho' the nights were dark we had flambeaux. Miss 
Pratt and I thought ourselves amazingly lucky. We 
were in their coach, ours next, and the chaise behind 
that, robb'd. It would have been silly to have lost 
one's diamonds so totally unexpected ; and diamonds 
it seems they came after, more in number than mine 
indeed. It seems it was well known Mr. Hodges 
would not let Lady Villiers' jewels be kept at Bowney,' 
so that each night her woman was sent in a hired 
chaise to bring them home, and we found only hired 
chaises had been stopped. On the alarm, Lord Villiers 
sent a guard of six arm'd men for the Duenna, and so 
to the great joy of the company we soon heard of her 
being arrived in safety. After this there were two 
dances before supper; that ready, the family desired 
the company to go down just as nearest the door, 
without ceremony, and fill the rooms below, in all 
which were tables ready, as they came to them, so that 
there was not the least confusion. The suppers were 
very elegant, provision of every kind, wine, fruits, &c., 
&c., as at Freeman's, No servants but those of the 

' Old spelling for Bolney Court, Oxon. 




Grandisons and Villiers ; indeed they have such 
numbers no others could be wanted. Everything was 
sent from their house, and their own three cooks to 
dress it. Soups and game as usual hot, the rest cold. 
We hear cost Lord Villiers jCi 000. The dancing, 
with cotillons, we heard continii'd till near six. We 
took our leave rather sooner, as Lord Camden was 
obligd to be in town that day to dinner, so that 
returning to Fawley, we took not quite three hours* 
sleep before we sat down to breakfast ; that over, my 
Lord and family set off for London, and us for Hard- 
wick, and thus ended this agreeable week. . . . — I am 
your sincere friend and affec, Caroline Powys. 

January 14, 1777. 


Dramatis Persons. 

In Play of " The Provoked Husband ^^ acted at Bolney Courts Oxon. 



. Mr. Mills. 

Count Bosset . 


Lord Maldkn. 

Sir Fran as IVrongfiead . 

. Mr. Furze. 

Squire Richard 

(Mr. Onslow, second son 

( of Lord Onslow. 


. Mr. Churchill. 

Lord Townly . 

. Lord Villiers. 

Lady Grace 

. Miss Clark. 

Lady Wronghcad 

. Miss Hervev. 

Miss Jenny 

Miss Hopkins. 

Myrtiller . 

. Miss P. Hopkins. 

Mrs, Motherly 

Mrs. Johnson. 


Miss Newel. 

Lady Townly . 

Miss Hodges. 





. Monsieur Tessier. 



. Miss Hodges. 



Prologue by the Rev. T. Powys, spoken by Lord Villiers. 

Most raw recruits in times of peace appear 

To brave all dangers, and to mock at fear, 

But, when called forth to tread the embattled plain. 

They fairly wish themselves at home again. 

Whilst hardy veterans long inured to arms. 

Hear unappalled the battle's loud alarms. 

Thus wey unpracti^d in the stage's arts, 

Have fearless oft reheard d our various parts, 

Talk'd wondrous big of our theatric feats. 

And dared the censure of the vacant seats. 

And now alas ! the case is altered quite 

When such an audience opens in our sight ; 

Garrick himself in such a situation 

(Tho' sure to please), might feel some palpitation. 

Our anxious breasts no such presumption cheers, 

Light are our hopes, but weighty are our fears. 

We then ('tis too late to quit the field). 

Must to your judgment at discretion yield. 

Oh ! then be merciful ; the fault's not ours. 

If, with a wish to please, we want the powers. 

The following prologue was alter'd by Mr. Powy.s 
as it was first wrote by Mr. Coleman, to be spoke by 
** Lady Wronghead." The lines marked with commas 
were in the original : — 

Spoken by Mr. Mills in the character of *' Manlev." 

I fear the ladies think my last night's dealing. 
Betray d a heart quite destitute of feeling : 
Who to my married friends such lessons gave, 
As made each husband think his wife a slave. 
So doctor like, I've took an early round. 
And just stept in to tell you what I found 
My Lady Townly's quite to health restor'd : 
And cousin Wronghead's pulse is vastly lower'd. 
The first whose bosom grateful friendship warm'd. 
Thus spoke the dictates of a heart reform'd, 
** Sick of my follies, faithful to my vows ; 
* ** I'm now remarried to my former spouse. 


" Ladies there are at this might feel remorse, 1777 

" And find perhaps more charms in a divorce. 

" I've trod the giddy round, and don't deplore 

" That the gay dream of dissipation's o'er. 

But Lady Wronghead still bewailed her fate. 

And sigh'd for splendour, equipage, and state. 

Farewell, dear scenes ! she cried, was ever wife 

Bom with a genius for the gayest life, 

'* Like me untimely blasted in her bloom, 

*^ Like me condemned to such a dismal doom. 

" No money when I just know how to waste it, 

" No London when I just began to taste it. 

" Farewell the high-crown'd head, the cushioned tite^ 

" Which takes the cushion from its prop'rer seat. 

" * Seven the mairiy that sound must now expire, 

" Lost at hot cockles round a Christmas fire. 

" Farewell, dear scenes, where late such joys I knew ; 

'^ Dress, cards, and dice, I bid you all adiea 

" These joys thus banish'd I shall taste no more, 

" For Lady Wronghead's occupation's o'er. 

'* How shall I drag out life, and how, alas ! 

" Shall tedious country winter evenings pass ? 

*' Dear ma'am, I said, your groundless fears dismiss, 

I have a thought — a new one — it is this. 

Shall we come down and try to act a play ? 

A play ? and what d'ye think the wits will say ? 

Unheard with keenest satire they'll decry it. 

Turn all to farce^ and swear 'tis vain to try it. 

Avaunt such wits, who with ill-judging spleen, 

Shall rudely strive to blast the well-meant scene. 

Far happier he his faults like us he stops. 

And checks his follies when the curtain drops, 

No more in vice or error to engage, 

And play the fool at large on iife^s great stage. 

Prologue by Mr. T. Powys before Monsieur Tessier*s per/ormaftce 
<?/" Rousseau's French piece ^2/^ Pygmalion. 

Spoken by Lord Malden. 

As some there are who may not know the story. 
Which the French poet means to lay before ye, 



XT*]*] I'll tell you in plain English what he says. 

A young unmarried prince in former days, 
Long raird at wedlock, and could never find 
In all the seXy a woman to his mind. 
Some were too shorty and others were too tally 
Too faty too thiriy there was some fault in all. 
Tir'd with the fruitless search, at length he cried, 
Art shall supply what Nature hath denied; 
I'll make 2i faultless maid: so said so done; 
Just to his taste he made a maid oi stone, 
Th* enraptur'd artist, as her charms he viewed, 
Stood, by the magic of his art subdued. 
But still she was a piece of mere still life. 
And something more he wanted in a wife. 
A wife, he thought, some little warmth should share 
Are there none here whose wives have sotne to spare 
He kissed her oft, but ah ! how cold the kiss ? 
Especially in such a night as this,^ 
Vain was his art, for, do whatever he could. 
There was no comfort without flesh or blood. 
To Venus he addressed his fervent prayer, 
That she would animate the obdurate fair ; 
For Venus cany whene'er she will, impart 
A yielding softness to the hardest heart. 
His prayer was heard, she gently turned her head, 
And o'er her limbs the glow of life was spread. 
Convinced at last, he feels her pulse beat high, 
And wanton seem'd to roll her am'rous eye. 
Loos'd was her tongue ! she was indeed a wife, 
And he no more complained she wanted life I 

1778 May 1778. — We went when with Miss Ewer at 
Clapham to see Panes Hill,^ late Mrs. Hamilton's. The 
grounds are seven miles round, which we went in 
little chaises. . . . The finest as well as the most 
strikingly beautiful grotto, all made of Derbyshire 

August 12M. — We went to pay a visit to Mrs. 
Annesley, Bletchingdon House, Oxon. In this part 

^ January 6-ioth, snow then on the ground. 
' Grounds made by Hon. Charles Hamilton. 



of our county^ there are more fine houses near each 1778 
other than in any, I believe, in England. We were 
reckoning nineteen within a mornings airing worth 
seeing. I must say something of that we were at, 
as Mr. Brown ^ would style it, **A place of vast 
capabilities'' stands high, the ground lays well, and 
the views round it far preferable to most in that 
county. Mrs. Annesley's is large, tho* only seven 
windows in front, the present approach thro' a fine 
stone gateway with iron rails, you ascend a large 
flight of steps into a large hall, opposite you a second 
flight carries you into a second or larger hall, in which 
fronts you by far the noblest staircase I ever saw. 
'Tis of Manchineale wood, and after going up about 
twenty steps it turns to the right and left, making a 
gallery at the top which looks down into the hall, 
this gallery leads to all the chambers. On the ground 
floor are four parlours, library, and state bedroom ; 
many rooms were fitted by the Lord Anglesey who 
built it, but which Mr. Annesley was going to finish, 
but his sudden death prevented, and as his lady 
justly observes, it would be absurd in her to lay out 
money there, as her eldest son will have so immense 
a fortune, it would only be injuring her younger 
children, and she is too good a mother to do that ; 
indeed, hers and their happiness seem'd centred in 
each other. I think I never felt more for any one 
than I did for her at hearing an account of his death 
(tho' now years since), from a lady who is there every 
year, and was at the time. I own I am always foolish 

^ Bletchingdon was held for King Charles I. by C. C. Windebank, 
who, however, surrendered it hastily to Cromwell, for which he was shot, 
April 3, 1644. 

' " Capability " Brown, the great landscape gardener. 


1778 with regard to dreams, and now from these worthy- 
good people, whose veracity I cannot doubt, I fear 
I shall in future be still more superstitious. 

Mr. and Mrs. Annesley were a most happy 
couple, had known each other from childhood, had 
been married, I suppose, about ten years, had two 
sons and two daughters. She waked herself and 
him one night with crying so violently in her sleep 
that he was quite alarm'd. He insisted on knowing 
what dream she had had ; she only said she had 
dreamt he was not well, but it was, that he fell down 
in a fit. He laughed at her as she lay crying for 
an hour or two, and going to sleep again, she again 
dreamt the same. Tis impossible, the lady says, to 
tell her anxiety the whole next day, he laughing it off, 
and at dinner he said, ** Well, my dear, Tm not sick 
yet, I think, for I never was so hungry in my life ; " 
she answered, ** Indeed I am very foolish, but I shall 
be better in a day or two." That night pass'd over, 
but, poor man, next day at tea-time he was nowhere 
to be found ; when she heard this, she flew about like 
a wild creature into every room. Going into their 
bed-chamber and not seeing him, she was running out 
of it when the youngest child says, " Mamma, perhaps 
papa is in the closet," and throwing open the door, 
there he lay dead ; she immediately fainted, and what 
she must that instant have felt is hardly to be 
imagined. She has never been in that room or the 
library since, and if anybody mentions dreams, only 
says, " Pray don't talk on that subject." We spent 
a most agreeable week there, there being a good 
deal of company, fourteen of us in the parlour, but 
tho' our party was large, it did not hinder our seeing 
places every day we were there, and the first place, 


as the nearest, we went to was Blenheim. . . . The 1778 
environs of Blenheim have been amazingly improved 
by Brown since I was last there, many rooms furnish 'd 
and gilt, and as there are many fine pictures, must 
be always worth seeing. A fine ride round the park 
of five miles which we went, and afterwards three 
round the shubbery. The Duke, Duchess, and many 
of their children, with other company, were driving 
about in one of those clever Dutch vehicles call'd, 
I think, a Waske, a long open carriage holding fifteen 
or sixteen persons. As forms are placed in rows so 
near the ground to step out, it must be very heavy, 
but that, as it was drawn by six horses, was no incon- 
venience, and 'tis quite a summer machine ^ without any 
covering at the top. 

The next morning we went to Middleton Park, 
Lord Jersey's. As Lady Jersey was Miss Twysden, 
daughter of the Bishop of Raphoe, so nearly related 
to my father,^ we had a curiosity to see the place, 
tho' the family were abroad, and tho' on a small 
plan, I hardly ever saw so clever one for its size, as 
every room is good, tho' only four in the whole. 
You enter a hall, the staircase behind ; on one side 
an eating- room 36 by 22, on the other side a draw- 
ing-room the same dimensions, with a most excellent 
library out of the first, behind the hall, 70 feqt long. 
In this room, besides a good collection of books, 
there is every other kind of amusement, as billiard 
and other tables, and a few good pictures. As her 
Ladyship is, according to the present taste, a botanist. 

^ The parent, apparently, of the modem char-k-banc ! 

• The father-in-law, Mr. Powys (whom she always calls father). His 
wife's mother was a daughter of Sir William Twysden, hence Lady Jersey 
was her cousin. 


177:8 she has a pretty flower-garden going out of the 
library ; upstairs is an elegant small dressing-room, 
the window down to the ground, and, what has a 
pretty effect, the shutters are looking-glass which 
reflect the prospect very pleasingly. The beautiful 
Duchess of Devonshire and many of the principal 
nobility are hung round the room in miniature pic- 
tures, and some very good etchings by the present 
Lord Harcourt 

The next day we were to pay a visit to Sir James 
Dashwood's, Kirklington Park, two miles from Bletch- 
ingdon ; 'tis not finished yet ; when complete will 
be a most noble one. In the drawing-room are some 
good pictures, among them those of their daughters. 
I always thought Lady Galloway ^ the most pleasing, 
but in these portraits the Duchess ^ is by far the hand- 
somest. As to Sir James, we could not help saying 
at our return, that he was at sixty-three, one of the 
finest men we ever saw. Lady Dash wood's china- 
room, the most elegant I ever saw. *Tis under the 
flight of stairs going into the garden ; it's ornamented 
with the finest pieces of the oldest china, and the 
recesses and shelves painted pea-green and white, the 
edges being green in a mosaic pattern. Her Ladyship 
said she must try my judgment in china, as she ever 
did all the visitors of that closet, as there was one 
piece there so much superior to the others. I thought 
myself fortunate that a prodigious fine old Japan dish 
almost at once struck my eye. The next morning we 
set out very early, in a very large party of several 
carriages to see both Ditchley and Heythrop. The 
first, the seat of the late Lord Lichfield, a large 

* Wife of the eighth Earl of Galloway. 

' Elizabeth, wife of eighth Duke of Manchester. 


house, ^ fourteen rooms on a floor, and not one good j^^g 
one. A bed-chamber with hangings, bed, and furni- 
ture of crimson and yellow velvet is shown as a great 
curiosity, but I think ugly. The pattern is all pagoda. 
It was a present of Admiral Lee, my Lord's brother, 
who had it taken out of the loom in China, and the 
loom broke that no one else might have the same. 
The drawing-room chairs are Gobelin tapestry, each 
one of -^sop's Fables, and an exceeding fine carpet, 
the work of Lady Lichfield.* The bed-chambers are 
very good, and on that floor an excellent library. We 
there saw a fine book of plants painted exceeding 
well, which Lord Bute got for Lord Lichfield, and I 
must mention a leather chair in this room, which from 
its construction seems the greatest treasure to a gouty 
or sick person, as if their hands are at liberty they 
move themselves most easily to any part of a room. 
It has four wheels, two within the four I believe. 
The housekeeper could not tell where bought, but cost 
seven guineas. 

From Ditchley is not more than an hour's drive 
to Heythrop,' Lord Shrewsbury's, a place well worth 
seeing indeed, tho' the country is bad. You enter a 
hall which appears infinitely larger by three arches 
fronting you. The middle one only is an arch, the 
other two are windows of plate-glass which reflect 
the grand avenue of clumps (the first of the kind in 
England), by which you approach the house.* The 
deception is strikingly pretty. There has within these 
few years two rooms here been fitted up at vast 

^ Now Viscount Dillon's, a descendant. 

' She brought Ditchley to her husband, being a Lee, a descendant of 
Sir Henry Lee, mentioned in " Woodstock." 
' Now seat of Albert Brassey, Esq. 
* Burnt down in 1831 whilst occupied by the Duke of Beaufort. 


1778 expense, one of them the most noble library, eighty- 
three feet long, twenty feet high, the colour green, very 
fine stucco ornaments by the famous Roberts, of 
Oxford. There are nine Venetian windows, two fine 
statuary marble chimney-pieces. In the arches over the 
doorway are fables of -^sop s, finely executed in stucco, 
with wreaths of vine leaves, the ground round them 
Artois colour — the sofas, chairs, and curtains fine 
chintz, a present of the late Lord Clive, a bed and 
furniture of the same above stairs. The other room 
is the drawing-room, which Sir James Dash wood 
informed us Lady Shrewsbury had often told him the 
furnishing of that only cost ;^6ocx) — the two sofas 
ninety guineas each, each chair thirty. They are of 
tent stitch-work at Paris, the carved frames made 
there and gilt in England. The grate, polished steel, 
cost jCgS ; the statuary marble chimney-piece, ;^I500. 
This room is 47 feet by 25, and 20 high. Its hung 
with Brussels tapestry, representing the four quarters 
of the world. Four fine drawings in chiaro-obscura 
over each door are most striking, done by Garrety, 

One morning while at Bletchingdon we went to 
see a fine steel manufacture at Woodstock, made 
some purchases,, but 'tis all amazing dear. Saw some 
scissors at fifteen guineas a pair, very curious no 
doubt, but not answerable to the price ; sword-hilts 
and stars for the nobility are beautiful — the latter not 
dear, about twenty guineas each, but scissors at fifteen 
guineas are extravagant to a degree, as the steel, they 
told me, is equally good at 2s. 6d., the open work above 
adding to the price. 

1779 On Monday, the 15th March 1779, my brother 
(-in-law), Powys was appointed a Prebend of Bristol 


by the Lord Chancellor Thurlow, by recommendation 1779 
of my Lord Camden. 

On September 14th, 1779, we had the great loss 
of a friend, as well as parent, in my Father Powys, 
who died about six in the morning. 'Tis a most self- 
pleasing reflection, as a daughter-in-law, to know that 
in the seventeen years we lived together we never 
had the shadow of a dispute, and his own sons have 
now the inexpressible consolation of considering they 
ever made it the study of their lives to make him happy. 
Indeed he was so good a man that no one could be more 
deserving of the happiness he seemed always to have 
enjoy'd in a life rather uncommonly fortunate, as he 
lived to seventy-five years of age without knowing 
what illness was till that which carried him off, for 
by great temperance, and great exercise, he was cer- 
tain of a great share of health, and for fifty years 
he had liv'd with different branches of his family of 
all ages, from one year old to fourscore, and never 
known to quarrel with any. 

Caroline Isabella^ inoculated October 13th, 1779. 

In April 1780 we went to Bath for Mr. Powys* 1780 
health. He soon received benefit from the waters, 
and having numbers of our old acquaintances there, 
we passed six most agreeable weeks. We went from 
there one day to Corsham,^ Mr. Methuen's, to see 
one of the finest collections of pictures now in Eng- 
land — indeed they surpass expectation. In two rooms 
the value of those only are ;^30,ooo, consisting of 
only sixty-eight pieces. 'Tis an old house, and badly 
situated. Among the above-mention'd fine pictures it 
hurts me to mention two portraits of children in the 
hall by our so famed Sir Joshua Reynolds, whose 

* Mrs. Powys' daughter. • Ten miles from Bath. 


1780 portraits when first done seem so inimitable, and in 
the course of a very few years are absolutely without 
the least colouring left. Sure if he would be shown 
some of these gone pieces, he would, for his own 
fame's sake, try to obviate this horrid appearance of 
his works. ^ 

We spent one agreeable day at the hot well,* 
Bristol ; dined there, walked up those fine rocks, and 
staying to see the tide come in, had the most beautiful 
view of that sweet place ; crossed over the river to see 
a place just taken by Mr. Hussey, who married a 
daughter of Lord Walpole s — 3, sweet situation. The 
dismal brown pump-room (at the hot wells), always 
strikes one with horror. Tm certain its being so dull 
a one, must strike the miserable concourse of invalids 
always assembled in it with a melancholy not to be 

In July this year, being at Mrs. Winford's, near 
Marlow,' we went to pay a visit at Lord Bostons.* 
IVe before mentioned the situation of this charming 
place, and gave it far the preference to its neigh- 
bouring one, Clifden. I must now say how complete 
the whole is now made by his present Lordship's 
having built a new house, which tho' not to be styled 
large or magnificent, is altogether the most elegant 
one IVe seen for a vast while. The drawing-room a 
white flock paper ; the chairs and curtains lute-string, 
white ground, a faint stripe, and fringed. My lady's 
dressing-room octagon, the corners fitted up with the 
cleverest wardrobes in inlaid woods ; their own bed the 

* This is written twelve years before Sir Joshua's death, which was 
in 1792. 

* Clifton hot well. 

* Thames Bank. 

* Hedsor. This house built, 1778, by first Lord Boston. 


Dutch cord white dimity, Devonshire brown fringe, 1780 
curtains and chairs the same ; all over the house a 
thousand elegant neatnesses and contrivances. 

The next day we went to see the Queen's bed, 
lately put up at Windsor, a most curious piece of 
work indeed. Miss Hudson (who teaches the new 
patchwork at Bath), was one of the workers, and she 
was regretting, as every one might, that poor Mrs. 
Wright died just before it was finished. The colours, 
designs, and work are all beautiful. It was fourteen 
years about working, but I should fear would not last 
many years without fading exceedingly. The Castle 
is now kept much neater than when I was there last ; 
the pictures have been all cleaned, many more brought 
there, some new furniture, and indeed the whole noble 
place looks much more like the residence of royalty 
than it did some years ago. 

In September we were at Mr. Mount's,^ in Berk- 
shire, Wasing Place, a most elegant new house, built 
of the white brick — fine pictures, and the fittings-up 
in the modern taste — a contrast to the fine seat of 
Mr. Chute s,^ about twelve miles from them, in Hamp- 
shire, a place we had long wish'd to see, as we were 
acquainted with the family, though at too great a 
distance to visit from Hardwick. We were happy 
to accept their obliging invitation to dine there with 
our friends at Wasing. The Vine is indeed a noble 
old house ; the number of rooms immense ; two long 
galleries, one full of whole-length portraits ; the other 
they make a greenhouse of in winter, and they say 

^ Mrs. Powys' uncle by marriage with her aunt, Miss Elizabeth 

* The Vine, long the residence of the Sandys family, bought by 
Chaloner Chute in the Commonwealth. He was then Speaker of the 
House of Commons. 


1780 has a most pleasing effect to walk thro' the oranges, 
myrtles, &c., ranged on each side. The room we 
dined in, of a vast length, is painted dark blue, small 
old panels, in each of which is a gold star, the cornice 
gilt. It has not a bad appearance in a house of that 
antiquity ; but what is most curious at the Vine is 
a chapel * in which are three large windows of the 
finest painted glass, 'Tis exquisitely beautiful ; we 
might have spent hours in viewing the different his- 
tories of the several compartments, and there is like- 
wise a fine ancient pavement^ well worth observing, 
and good carving. Mr. Chute' is now erecting a 
most superb monument* of statuary marble in an 
inner chapel to the memory of Chaloner Chute. It's 
finely executed, indeed; has already cost him ;^iooo, 
tho' not near finished. He has got from abroad a 
screen, I believe 'tis called, or folding doors of most 
curious open carved work, which is to part the out- 
ward and inner chapels. At the Vine are numberless 
curiosities, among which a service of finest delf, much 
more valuable than any china, each plate a different 
view of Venice. In the gallery library are many 
portfolios of the finest prints, and in a closet below, 
out of the suit of rooms, is a most elegant cabinet, 
very valuable. 

* Built by first Lord Sandys, who brought the glass from Boulogne 
after the siege, temp. Henry VIII. 

' Also from Boulogne. 

* John Chute, the friend of Horace Walpole. 

* Sculptured by Banks, after a portrait by Vandyck in the house. 




We set out to Mr. Slaneys,^ in Norfolk, Mr. Powys 1781 
and Phil in the whisky. My mother, Caroline, myself, 
and Triphosa * in the coach. Lay that night at March's, 
Salt Hill ; breakfasted the next morning at Turnham 
Green, and got to Mr. Creuze's,' Leytonstone, to 
dinner by four, where we had promised to pay a visit 
on our way. The next morning they were so obliging 
as to take us to see Wanstead House,* the seat of the 
Earl of Tylney, reckoned one of the finest houses in 
the kingdom. There are nineteen rooms on the prin- 
cipal floor, and most furnish'd and fitted up in the 
ancient taste, with Brussels tapestry, in Flanders and 
cut velvet, the sofas reaching the whole side of the 
rooms. The hall very magnificent, 50 feet high, the 
ceiling painted by Kent, whose portrait is over the 
chimney. The rooms seem all small, at least compa- 
ratively so. In the first into which we were shown is 
a good picture of Titian, a Holy Family, and six 
whole-lengths of the Tylneys, by Sir Godfrey Kneller. 
The ball-room 75 feet long by 30, olive and gold 
wainscot ; two compartments of Brussels tapestry, one 
the battle of Telemachus, the other his shipwreck in 
Calypso s Island. To look through the suite of apart- 

^ Mrs. Powys' cousin on maternal side. 

' The maid. 

' Francis Creuzd, Esq., a cousin of Mr. Slaney's and Mrs. Powys's, a 
banker in Lefevre & Co. 

* Built for first Earl of Tylney in 1715 ; pulled down in 1822. The 
Earl of Momington, who married the heiress of Tylneys, spent all her fine 
fortune of ;£8o,ooo a year. The sale of the contents of Wanstead lasted 
thirty-two days, conducted by the celebrated George Robins. 


1 78 1 ments has a fine effect, 360 feel, the length of the 

We returned to Mr. Creuz6's to dinner. The next 
day Mr. and Miss Ewer came to Leyton, and on the 
Friday morn we left it. My mother staid there till 
our return from Norfolk. We breakfasted at Brent- 
wood.^ Near that town was Warley Camp,* but at 
this time camps had been so numerous, and the rage 
for seeing them had been so great, that we did not 
think it worth while to go out of our way for a view 
of it. We dined at the ** Black Boy," Chelmsford, and 
meant to lay at Kelverden. Got there about nine, 
and found the two inns quite full. When proceeding 
six miles farther to Stanway, every soul in the village 
were in their beds ; nor could all our vociferation 
awake them, which, after some time endeavouring in 
vain, we were oblig d, with tired horses and fatigued 
very much ourselves, to go on to Colchester, in as 
dark a night as any in J uly ; but the road was fortu- 
nately good. Just at eleven we got to the ** King's 
Head" Inn, and there rested ourselves and animals 
till ten the next morning. Colchester is an exceeding 
pretty town, full of good houses. We stopped to take 
a second breakfast on the road on Saturday, and got 
to Ipswich about seven in the evening, where we 
stayed most of the next day at the ** White Horse," • 
the most nasty, noisy inn I think I was ever at in my 
life. But indeed the town itself is dreadful — narrow 
streets, poor-looking old houses, and altogether a most 
melancholy place. We went to a good church, and 

* On highway to Chelmsford. Forty coaches a day traversed it then. 

* This camp, on the site of an ancient one, was re-established during 
the French Revolution. 

' Immortalised by Dickens in ** Pickwick." 


tolerable preacher ; but we were not the least concern'd 1781 
to leave Ipswich, which we did in the evening, and 
went to Sewell Inn, within twenty miles of Norwich, 
which inn seemed a perfect palace after our miseries of 
the preceding evening. 

Monday we breakfasted at Long Stratton's, and 
got to Mr. Slaney's, Norwich, soon after three. His 
house is a very good one ; stands on the Tomblands, 
so caird, as imagined, by its having formerly been a 
burial-place ; but this is mere conjecture. 

Tuesday, Mr. Slaney took us to see the usual sights, 
as the City Hall, a fine building, formerly a church.^ 
The light Gothic pillars are beautiful. There are full- 
length pictures of all their mayors in their robes round 
the hall. In the evening went to see a garden of Mr. 
Ives in a village call'd Bishopthorp, near Norwich, 
from which there is a fine view of the country and the 
navigable river that comes up to the city. This gentle- 
man has lately built a new house here. The garden 
was a marl pit. We took a further drive to a place 
called the ** Grove " ; the prospect from it is pleasing. 

Wednesday we went up the Castle Hill. The 
castle is now the county gaol, the finest that can be ; 
commands a noble prospect of the city and country 
round, with the thirty-six churches, and elegant light 
spire of the cathedral. We then went to see the new 
hospital, where the poor patients are kept in so per- 
fect, neat, and comfortable a manner ; 'tis hardly con- 
ceivable. We then paid a visit to Mr. and Mrs. 
Chambers, who have just built a new house. In the 
evenings walk'd to the tea-gardens, a Vauxhall in 

' St. Andre Vs Hall, nave of the Black Friars' Church, given at Dis- 
solution to the city. 


1 78 1 Friday, we went to see the cathedral, a very fine 

Gothic building. The Dean s lady, Mrs. Lloyd (who 
was Miss Grey, the celebrated worker in worsted), has 
just put up a fine east window of stain'd glass, about 
thirty portraits of the Apostles, &c., full-length; a 
window underneath of the Ascension. That evening 
we drove out some miles to an old Roman encamp- 

Saturday, we went about ten miles from Norwich 
to a place called Hoveden Hall, the seat of Mr. 
Ofrier, a relation of Mr. Powys. We had the morti- 
fication to find they had gone to Tunbridge. 

Sunday, after church, Mrs. Green, the clergyman's 
lady, took us to the Deanery to see Mrs. Lloyd's 
work, which is indeed quite amazing, A whole- 
length of a hermit with a folio prayer-book open, is 
beyond description, though some think an old gar- 
dener at his stall, with a young girl, is superior to 

Monday morn we received and paid visits. About 
one the Sheriff, Mr. Doughty, came into the city in 
great state. That office is here attended with great 
expense, at least ;^300, whereas with us in Oxford- 
shire I have heard my father Powys say it cost him 
between one and two. After his fatigue of conducting 
in the Judges was over, we met him at his lodgings 
and drank tea with him and his lady, who was Miss 
Powys of Northamptonshire.^ She desired Td go 
with her to the Assize ball the next day, but I had 
been asked by Mr. Slaney to go with Lady Astley, 
Mrs. Ives, Mrs. Bacon, and Mr. Jerningham,* &c., &c., 

^ Caister St. Edmund. 

* Anne Powys, sister of the first Lord Lilford. 

3 Wife of Sir Edward Astley, of Melton Constable. 

* Of Costessey Hall, Norfolk. 




so was obliged to decline the obliging offer. Tuesday 1781 
the procession of the Judges, Mayor, Corporation, 
Sheriff, and neighbouring gentlemen made a capital 
cavalcade as they came over Tombland by Mr. 
Slaney s window. In the evening our very large 
party met at the ball, a very numerous assembly, and 
numbers of the ladies profuse in jewellery, particularly 
the Ladies Buckingham^ and Astley. The High 
Sheriffs lady always stands the top couple, the second 
was Miss Bacon and our son Philip. We got home 
about two, after being highly entertained. 

The next morning we went to see Yarmouth, but 
I must not forget a church we pass'd on our way. At 
the top of the tower you may, as you go by, perceive 
a tomb, the anecdote of which is, ** that two maiden 
ladies always had declared that, as they never had 
lain by man on earth, they never would after death," 
so were really enclos d on the top of the aforesaid 
tower. We got to Yarmouth about four. 'Tis a very 
pleasing town, and numbers of good houses, and their 
quay reckoned the prettiest in England — a mile long, 
very broad, and numbers of handsome houses. The 
view from the sea from thence very fine, from the 
numbers of ships always laying in the road. They 
are now raising new fortifications in the vicinity of 
Yarmouth, as they daily expect to be surprised by the 
Dutch. The loss by the Dutch war * to this town was 
really terrible, as malt and herring houses that did let 
for £70 a year now let for less than ;^30. 

We went to see the use of the drying-houses for 
herrings, which is really curious. They are sheds 

^ Wife of first Marquis of Buckingham. 

' The Dutch war in 1660, also in 1778, when Admiral Parker re- 
pulsed the Dutch, but with heavy loss. 



1 78 1 round a little court. Under the sheds the herrings 
are laid three deep. The shed holds three lasts. A 
last is 10,000, and a vessel generally brings about 
eight lasts. When they have hung out of doors two 
days they are wash'd in tubs of brine, then brought 
to an inner house to the gang of women — ^twelve is 
a gang — who spit them on sticks, which sticks hang 
from the ceiling to the floor, on cross-band beams 
from the top, about 40 or 50 feet high, then fires are 
made under them by sticks of 4 feet long, the size 
according to Act of Parliament, and when dry'd put 
into barrels. 

We walked and rode upon the sands, from which 
is a most picturesque view ; no shells, but pretty 
pebbles, many white cornelians, and quantity of pretty 
sea -weeds. The jetties or wooden platforms are 
thrown out into the sea. The most droll thing in 
Yarmouth are their little carts, alias hackney-coaches, 
in which everybody goes about, as their rows,^ or 
what in London we should call alleys, are too narrow 
for any other carriages to pass, as the broadest are 
only 4 feet 8i inches, some only 3, or 3 feet 2 or 3 
inches. The riding in these Yarmouth carts is truly 
comic, and their uncommon jolting hardly to be borne, 
and those not used to driving them would immediately 
overturn them, as the wheels are underneath and no 
farther out than their shafts, the whole lower than 
our garden- whisky — in short, just upon the ground. 
There is one fine church* and chapel, the former built 
about eight hundred years, with a spire so dreadfully 

^ One hundred and fifty-six of these rows still exist in the old part of 
the town. These carts date from Henry VII.*s reign. 

* Dedicated to Saint Nicholas, the patron saint of sailors ; second 
largest parish church in England. First built circ. 1091 by Herbert de 
Losinga, Bishop of Norwich. 


crooked it hurts the eye of every beholder, and verses 1781 
are written to ridicule that and the Yarmouth females — 

'' The Yarmouth girls are one and all 
Straight as their steeple, tho' not quite so tail" 

It was reported the whole day we were there that 
the Dutch were to land and burn the town that night. 
I cannot say we were greatly alarm'd. though cer- 
tainly the Ministry, by the preparations they are 
making there of three batteries, the gates and walls 
repairing, do expect them, and the Dutch knowing 
the coast so well, 'tis, they say, very easy. In the 
evening we went to the camp at Hopton Warren, 
about four miles from Yarmouth, on a hill command- 
ing a most noble view of the sea, and a very dry, 
healthy situation. Lowestoffe, a town near where the 
camp is now, is the most eastern point of the king- 
dom. The Duke of Manchester is there, and Colonel 
Bullock commands the Essex, and Major Tinon 
commands the camp. We dined at Blowfield, and 
returned to Mr. Slaney s in the evening. 

Saturday we din'd at Mr. Ives , a party of seven- 
teen — a most superb dinner, eighteen dishes the first 
course, including the two soups. In the evening we 
all went to the play ; a very pretty theatre. Sunday 
went to church at St. Andrew's. The altar-piece, full- 
length portraits of Moses and Aaron, reckoned a very 
capital one. 

Monday morning we left Mr. Slaney s with great 
regret. He was so obliging as to go with us some 
part of our journey. We breakfasted at Blickling,^ 
the village where Lord Buckingham's house is — a fine 

' Was begun building in James I., completed 1628; now the Marquis 
of Lothian's. 


1 78 1 old seat and noble park, and a very fine piece of 
water. They told us Anne Boleyn was born here. 
We dined at *'The Feathers" at Holt, and lay at 
Walsingham, and the next morning went to see that 
fine old ruin call'd Our Lady of Walsingham,^ sup- 
posed to be the finest in England. They are in the 
gardens of a Mr. Warren.* It even now (with every 
disadvantage of an owner who has no pleasure in 
being possess d of such a great curiosity), gives one 
the highest gratification ; but if the garden was laid 
out with the best modern taste, this noble arch would 
stand clear of all the rubbish with which it is sur- 
rounded. I there saw a most beautiful tree call'd the 
trumpet-ash. Mr. Slaney was so good as to pro- 
cure me a fine young one, which I planted at Hard- 
wick in remembrance of him and Walsingham Abbey. 

From thence we proceeded to Holkham, now the 
seat of Mf. Coke. When I was in Norfolk some 
years ago, it was Lord Leicester's, then not near 
finished. I shall say nothing of this place, as in a 
journal in 1756, in a letter to my father, I've given 
a description of it. 

At Houghton we proposed again seeing Lord 
Orford s, a seat once so famed for the most capital 
collection of pictures in England, lately purchased by 
the Empress of Russia.* We had most fortunately 
seen them in the year 1756, and I then took a written 
catalogue of them all from one Lord Orford had given 
Mr. Jackson. 'Tis really melancholy to see the hang- 
ings disrob'd of those beautiful ornaments, and only 

* From the famous image of the Virgin once here. An Augustinian 
Priory founded early in the twelfth century. 

* Now in the Lee Warner family. 

* Sold by George, third Earl of Orford, for ;^4o,5oo to Catherine II., 
to the annoyance of his uncle, Horace Walpole. 



one picture now there, a portrait of the Empress 1781 
herself, which she made my Lord a present of; but 
though 'tis said to be a striking likeness, and well 
painted, it rather gives one pain to see the person 
who must deprive every one who now visits Hough- 
ton of the entertainment given to them by these 
pictures, and their going out of the kingdom makes 
it still worse. The house is good, but situation un- 
pleasing, as most are, I think, in the county of 
Norfolk. We din'd and lay at Swaffham. The 
next day we call'd at Mr. Chute's, who has a house ^ 
in this country, but they were then at ** The Vine," 
in Hampshire, generally residing half the year at that 
fine ancient seat. I had forgotten to mention that 
near Yarmouth is the famous ruin of Sir John Old- 
castles tower. It was said in Shakespeare's time 
that the character of Falstaff was drawn by him from 
that gentleman. 

At Swaffham, to our infinite regret, we parted with 
our amiable friend and relation, Mr. Slaney, after 
spending three weeks with him in the most agree- 
able manner possible. We breakfasted at Brand, in 
Suffolk. All about that place is, I think, one of the 
most horrid countries I ever beheld, and near here 
is the new purchase of our Oxfordshire neighbour. 
Lord Cadogan,^ call'd Sandy Downham ; • indeed, 
nothing but sand is visible — no tree, or hardly a 
bush. The road styled Brand Sands, for about 
thirteen miles, deep sand over the horses' hoofs, but 
they are endeavouring to mend it by mixing it with 

' South Pickenham Hall. 

' Charles Sloane, third Lord Cadogan, had just sold Caversham Park 
to Colonel Marsack. 
' Santon Downham. 


1 78 1 chalk. But for his Lordship to sell so beautiful a spot 
as Caversham Park to purchase the above dreary 
wild spot is certainly beyond one's ideas. 

1782 In the middle of September 1782, my mother 
(Mrs. Girle), made us all happy by coming to reside 
at Hardwick. She had long talked of leaving Read- 
ing and taking a house at Bath ; but we could not 
reconcile ourselves to her being at so great a distance, 
so in the end fixed on a scheme agreeable to us all, 
of living with her at Bath in the winter if she would 
consent to be at Hardwick the other part of the 

1783 We went to Bath the first week in February for 
three months, my mother taking a house in Russel 

Our eldest son, Philip,^ was at Lochee s Academy 
this year for six months. General Conway gave him 
a commission in the army, cornet of 50th Foot. 

1784 Went to Bath February 6th for three months with 
my mother ; had a house in Gay Street. 

The Ewers came to us at Hardwick. Our 
youngest son, Thomas, was in July this year chosen 
Fellow of St John's College. Oxford, tho' only fifteen 
years old. 

This summer (1784), we came to reside with my 
brother* at Fawley, August the loth, as we found 
Hardwick too large for only Mr. Powys, myself, and 
Caroline, after being used to so large a family, for 
my mother finding she did not like Bath so well as 
she imagined she would, intended to take a house 
near London. Our two sons too, being out in life, 
and my brother Powys, after educating them with 

^ Philip was then eighteen. 
* Her brother-in-law, Rev, Thomas Powys, Rector of Fawley, Bucks. 


the most parental tenderness, was left too by himself, 1784 
as Mr. Pratt, Robertson, Watson, and Annesley^ had 
all left him some years. It was not without the utmost 
regret I left Hard wick. Even tho' we proposed to 
let* it but for a few years, one must be partial to a 
spot so beautiful, where one had lived in the utmost 
felicity for two-and-twenty years ; but as the situation 
of Fawley is likewise delightful, and the house, tho' 
small, compact and elegant, it had ever been a 
favourite place with us all, and of course we removed 
with less regret as it in many respects was certainly 
much more eligible. 

However suitable for size and economy, we can 
imagine Fawley Rectory seeming like a doll's house 
to Mrs. Powys after her splendid mansion at Hard- 
wick. The situation of Fawley Rectory is certainly 
very fine. Perched on a ridge of the Chilterns, it 
commands to this day most extensive views, Windsor 
Castle being included in the panorama. Great num- 
bers of trees had been cut down throughout the 
country before and during the Civil War. Many points 
of view which Mrs. Powys could then see are hidden 
now by the vast growth and plantations of modern 
years. The approach to Fawley Rectory from the 
Marlow high-road is a gradual ascent of about two 
miles, through the typical beech-woods so familiar to 
all dwellers near the Chilterns. These woods, ex- 
quisite as they are in spring and summer, are dreary 
enough in the winter, and the extremely steep ascent 
is inconvenient, particularly in frosty weather. 

The Rev. Thomas Powys had been presented to 

1 Pupils of Rev. T. Powys. 

* Hardwick was soon let to Mr. Gardiner. 


1784 the living of Fawley in October 1762 by Mr. Sam- 
brook Freeman, of Fawley Court, Bucks. There 
existed a well at Fawley Rectory of the immense 
depth of 369 feet. In 1765 Mr. Powys planted a 
number of firs, shrubs, &c given to him by Lord 
Cadogan from Caversham Park, which place he soon 
afterwards sold to Major Marsack. Mr. Powys built 
a root-house or summer-house the same year. Hence- 
forth we must consider our Mr. and Mrs. Powys £ts 
residing at the Rectory. 

This autumn they all spent a week at Bletching- 
don Park (Mr. Annesley's). His mother, mentioned 
before in these pages, had died the previous year at 
Bath (1783). The eldest Miss Annesley married 
the same year Mr. Charles Warde, and early in 1785 
Mr. Annesley^ was married to Miss Catherine Hardy, 
daughter of Admiral Sir Charles Hardy. To return 
to the diary. 

1785 '' Febntary \sty 1785. — Our eldest son, Philip 
Lybbe, was appointed sub-brigadier and cornet in 
the 2nd troop of Horse Guards." 

In October 1785 Mrs. Powys gives the fol- 
lowinof amusing account in a letter to a friend, 
describing a visit of George III. and the royal 
family to Mrs. Freeman, widow of Sambrook Free- 
man, of Fawley Court, Bucks, who was residing 
then at Henley Park, having given up Fawley Court 
in 1782 to Mr. Strickland Freeman, nephew of her 
late husband, and constituted his heir in default of 

1 Father of first Viscount Valentia. 


Fawley, 1785 

December ^oth^ 1785. 

Well, my dear, as IVe given you so long a detail 
of our concerns, I think I ought to endeavour to 
entertain, as you say I always do. by my anecdotes of 
this social neighbourhood, but I must then go back 
from December to October last. Perhaps you may 
have seen in the newspapers that our Fawley environs 
was then honoured by the royal visitors. The servants 
at Fawley Court heard of them about two miles off ; 
of course thought they were coming there, as they 
often did in his uncle's ^ time, but to the no small dis- 
appointment of the nephew, as well as the domestics, 
they pass'd by, and went up to the Dowager Mrs. 
Freeman's at Henley Park, not so noble a house, but 
all elegance, and one of the most beautiful situations 
imaginable. She most unluckily had been some time 
confined to her house with a violent cold ; and the 
butler came running up to her dressing-room, saying, 
**The King and Queen, M'am." ''Don't alarm me, 
William" (you know her delicate manner) ; *'they are 
not coming here, but to Fawley Court, no doubt." 
However, another footman followed immediately, say- 
ing the carriages were just driving up, and he had got 
a good fire in the drawing-room. She had only time 
to say, ** A smart breakfast, William," and to throw on 
a huge cloak, and was down just as the King, Queen, 
two Princesses, Lady Louisa Clayton, and two gentle- 
men entered. They stayed two hours and a half, 
talked incessantly, seemed vastly pleased, and knew 
every family and their concerns in this neighbourhood, 
Mrs. Freeman said, better than she did herself! The 

^ Sambrook Freeman. 


1785 worst of these great visitors are that no servants must 
appear, and you are obliged to wait on them yourself ; 
this, ill as she then felt, was very fatiguing ; besides, 
not knowing the art, one must do it awkwardly. Mrs. 
Freeman, after standing up in the corner to make the 
tea in the same spot, she handed a dish to her 
Majesty, and was carrying one to the Princess Royal, 
who laughingly said, ** I believe you forgot the King." 
Mrs. Freeman, in some agitation, was ready to laugh 
too, as she says she had at the moment completely 
forgotten that kings were to be served before ladies ; 
but immediately rectified her mistake, and it was 
received in perfect good-humour ; but what next vexed 
her sadly was that she had no opportunity of giving 
the least refreshment to Lady Louisa, and the two 
gentlemen, who stood behind all the time, and were 
out so early in the morning, and to be at home so late, 
but she knew in the same room with their Majesties it 
was not to be attempted ; therefore if you know of it, 
another breakfast is prepared in another room in case 
opportunity offers to let their attendants partake of it. 
But the King seeing Mrs. Freeman was really ill, 
would not let her stir, and a servant she could not call 
in. That such distressing etiquette must be kept up 
is rather uncomfortable. After breakfast the King 
said they must see the house. *' Certainly," Mrs. Free- 
man said, and was going to the door to attend them, 
but he kept her back, and shut her in, saying, "You 
shall not go out with such a cold ; we will go by our- 
selves." And so they did wherever they chose, as 
no servant was to attend. The ladies, you know, are 
great workers, and admired some beautiful chairs Mrs. 
Freeman is now working. The Queen, too. Til assure 
you, asked what work her neighbour, Mrs. Powys, 


was about, as she knew she was very ingenious by 1785 
some painting she had seen some years ago of hers. 
This, I am sure, was a great compliment to me, as I 
should have thought her Majesty must have forgotten 
my gown, which I painted on white satin, which a 
lady begged me to let the Queen see. Just before 
Mrs. F.'s company departed, Lady Louisa had just 
time to whisper her that she was quite unhappy not 
to let her know of their coming, but they never tell, 
and love to take people by surprise. They had sent a 
note to her the night before to desire her company at 
nine the next morning to go driving, never mentioning 
where they were going. Certainly a visit to Mrs. 
Freeman's cottage, as she calls it, at Henley Park, 
tho' all elegance, was a great honour, and at the same 
time a mark of their Majesties good-natured atten- 
tion, as they had so often visited her in her former 
splendour at Fawley Court. Well, my dear, here 
ends the royal visit ; but Tve not got done with the 
bustle of that morn, tho', I think luckily, I've got 
a frank, or my letter would come to a sum from its 
length. Our family was put in the idea of royal visi- 
tors, not ourselves, for we were all rode or walked 
out different ways. It happened to be market-day 
at Henley, so, of course, all the country some miles 
round heard of the great event, and our servants were 
not a little surprised to see two teams come galloping 
uphill, not the usual stile of waggons, travelling at a 
great rate. The carters stopped at our gate, saying, 
" We cannot stay, as the King and Queen are just be- 
hind." Our housekeeper was in such a fuss. ** Oh dear, 
oh dear! what must I do now the family are from 
home?" But no time had they for consultation, as 
immediately a coach and six drove up the avenue, but 


1785 was soon found to be only Earl Macclesfield^ coming 
to pay us a morning visit, and returning thro' Fawley 
village, passed for King and Queen, and their daughter. 
Lady Mary,* for the Princess Royal. When I went 
to Shirburn Castle I made them all laugh heartily at 
this account. Mrs. Freeman returned, or as it is 
termed, went to thank their Majesties for their visit, 
the next court-day. Mrs. Freeman thought it would 
be a sad worry to her, £ts she had not been to court 
since Mr. Freeman's death, and was fearful no suit 
she had would do ; but luckily on her going to the 
mantua-maker s she found no alterations in the fashions 
for court dress for years, whereas common ones change 
every month. Flounces and trimmings, tho' quite out 
elsewhere, trebled ruffled cuffs and long dangling 
ruffles as formerly. 

The following extract from a letter of Mrs. Powys 
will show the old-fashioned Sangrado form of doc- 

''December 30, 1785. — We have now confined 
ourselves fifteen weeks with our dear son Philip, nor 
paid one visit but of a morning. You have not heard 
of his unfortunate journey here, as his tedious illness 
was owing to that. I've often told you what a good 
young man he is, and that he always chooses to be 
with us in the country except the four days at a 
time when he is upon guard. On the 1 5th September 
we had a letter to say he would come down the next 
day, as he believed something had flown in his eye as 
he was walking in the Park, and it gave him great 
uneasiness. He had shown it to the surgeon of his 
regiment, who said he would bleed him in the morn, 

' George, 4th Earl. ' Afterwards married the Earl of Haddington. 


gave him a cooling mixture, and desired him to go 1785 
into the country ; not on horseback, but in a chaise, 
keeping his eye from the air, and it would soon be 
well. All this was done ; but it being a very dark, 
rainy evening, that, tho' the postboy and himself knew 
the road perfectly through our wood, they lost it, and 
found themselves in a horse-way of Mr. Freeman's, near 
the root-house, where they knew there were many pits. 
Phil got out ; they put the horses behind, and with 
much difficulty dragged the chaise down again into the 
coach-road ; but he had not gone above ten minutes 
when he was overturned over a stump. The chaise, 
glasses, &c., were now broke. They did not attempt 
to raise it, but each took a horse, and at last reached 
home, and found they had been about an hour and a 
half in the wood, when twenty minutes is the usual 
time! Poor Phil went immediately to bed, being 
greatly fatigued, and the pain in his eye vastly in- 
creased, as he had lost his bandage, and his arm, too, 
had bled again ; in short, he was a most miserable 
object, and gave us all infinite anxiety, and for many 
days the inflammation increased. He was in too much 
pain to return to London, but fortunately a Mr. Daven- 
port, an eminent surgeon, has bought an estate near 
Marlow, and retired from town, and he was so kind as 
to come immediately, and has order d our surgeon 
here how to proceed, and is so good as to come 
to him every two or three days. He now mends 
amazingly, as all the faculty tell us. Time and warm 
weather only can make a perfect cure ; but as for many 
weeks we were apprehensive for the sight, we are 
most thankful. ... It is hardly possible to imagine 
with what fortitude he bears the sufferings he has gone 
through, though he has not since the accident tested a 


1785 bit of meat or drunk a drop of Tmne, had a perpetual 
blister ever since, and blooded every three or four days 
for many weeks. His health is certainly better than 
even I knew it, most probably from the discipline, some 
of which might be necessary for a young man in full 
health with a good appetite, and who never minds 
over-heating himself in shooting, cricket, &c." 

Truly, Mr. Powys' enduring this treatment was a 
survival of the fittest ! 

On December 31, Mr. Pratt, only son of Lord 
Camden, was married to Miss Moles worth by Mr. 
Powys. This is the account : — 

1786 ''January 13M, 1786. — A great wedding is over, 
in which my brother Powys did his clerical part in 
marrying his pupil, Mr. Pratt, to a most beautiful 
young lady, Miss Molesworth, niece to Lady Lucan. 
and a fortune of nearly ;^40,oaD. Their income will 
be incrjeased, as Pratt*s is now large, and will be so 
increased by his uncle, Mr. Pratt.^ After the cere- 
mony they went from Lord Lucan s by themselves to 
Camden Place for a few days, and from there to Mr. 
Pratt s at Wilderness, in Kent. Are to be presented 
at the birthday. Clothes all very superb ; all from 
Paris. (That I think wrong at an English court.) 
My brother says they laughed exceedingly at setting 
out in two post-chaises, to see the bride and bride- 
groom dressed with the utmost plainness in one car- 
riage, and in the other that followed the lady s maid 
and valet fine to a degree ; but this is quite the ton 
now. Their establishment is very large ; so numerous 
I style it uncomfortable — house-steward, man-cook, 
two gentlemen out of livery, under-butler, Mrs. Pratt s 

^ John Pratt, of Bay ham Abbey, who bequeathed his estates, in 1798, 
to the Marquis of Camden. 


two footmen, Mr. Pratt's two, upper and under coach- 1786 
men, two grooms, helpers, &c., &c. These are men- 
servants ; female ones, I dare say, in proportion. 
They were married the last day of the year 1785. 
Everybody told us it would never take place, as 
three matches with noblemen had been broken off; 
but IVe often heard the lady's reason for refusing each. 
I always thought our friend Pratt had a better chance 
than either of the trio. The first, she said, never 
entertained her with anything but politics, but a dry 
topic for courtship ; the second made a horrid husband 
to his first wife ; and the third had not sixpence in 
the world, from his own extravagance. She was not 
wrong in refusing all three ! " 

On January 13th, 1786, in a letter to a friend, Mrs. 
Powys gives an amusing account of a party of dis- 
tinguished foreigners visiting unexpectedly her friends 
and neighbours. General Conway and his wife. Lady 
Ailesbury, at Park Place. 

"Of all persons put in agitation by fine folks, I 
was more surprised at Lady Ailesbury, as I think, 
were I a Duke's^ daughter, and so constantly in high 
life, I should never have trepidations of that kind, but 
as her Ladyship was telling us of it when she dined 
with us a few days after, I must give her credit for 
the alarm, and no doubt it was provoking enough. 
As they were sitting at dinner, and nearly finished the 
first course, a letter was brought to General Conway 
from Count Zekany, saying himself and party, accord- 
ing to promise, were coming to wait on the General 
and Lady A. ' Who brought the letter ?' 'A ser- 
vant, sir.' ' And when do they come ? ' * They are 
just here, sir.' This put all into confusion, for, as 

* Duke of Argyll. 


1786 their dinner was half over, they could do nothing 
more than order the maitre cChdtel to make as elegant 
a second course as soon as possible, and in they came 
in a few minutes, Count Zekany and his lady, Count 
Ravenhully and his lady, and another lady, all strangers 
to Lady A., but by name knew them to be the prin- 
cipal families of their own countries. However, she 
had pretty nearly recovered her presence of mind, 
when she was again struck dumb by one of the 
Counts begging to introduce the lady who came with 
them as the Princess of Hesse. *Then,' says she, 
' I thought it was all over with me ; ' but they all so 
soon became acquainted, were so free and easy and 
polite, making so many apologies for not being 
acquainted with English customs, and having come 
in the middle of dinner (they only sup, I believe, 
abroad nearly as eclrly as the English dine), but they 
sat down and ate very heartily. Luckily, Lady 
Ailesbury's two daughters were with her, the Duchess 
of Richmond^ and Mrs. Damer,* and as all spoke 
French and Italian, the visit passed most agreeably. 
They admir'd the place, as *tis impossible to do other- 
wise, and everything they saw. In short, as her 
Ladyship said, were so much easier pleased than many 
English fine people she had had to entertain, that she 
was really sorry to part with them the next day. 
Towards the evening another distress popped into her 
head, viz., that foreign men and their wives seldom 
occupy the same beds, and, as the house was near full, 
this was of some consequence ; so she bid her General 

* Mary, wife of the third Duke, daughter of Lady Ailesbur/s first 

• Anne, married to Hon. John Damer, Lady Ailesbury's daughter by 
her second marriage. See note at end of book. 


whisper his friend, and find out what was to be done, 1786 
and in this they complied with the vulgar English 
fashion, and Lady Ailesbury sending the Duchess and 
Mrs. Darner up in the attics, made room for all their 

In March Mr. and Mrs. Powys set out for Bath, 
after waiting a fortnight with their boxes packed, the 
roads being quite impassable from snow ; but five out 
of the six weeks there she was ill with rheumatism. 

In May they went to stay with Mr. and Miss Ewer 
in London, in Charlotte Street. 

*' I was scarcely enough recovered to partake of 
the spring diversions of London, as indeed they are 
now all so late, it must be a very strong constitution 
that can. My favourite Ranelagh I ventured to but 
once, as 'tis nox. polite to enter the Rotunda till eleven 
at soonest. To the play I went, as those are early ; 
and I was really glad not to be deprived of again 
seeing Mrs. Siddons, and Jordan. The men actors at 
this period do not shine in London. We took Caroline 
(who was too young at eleven for public places), to 
see Sir Ashton Lever's museum,^ the Exhibition, the 
late Duchess of Portland's sale of curiosities," and the 
British Museum, all which highly entertained her, as 
did Astleys^ and Sadler's Wells.* The music at the 
Abbey, so very fine by every one s description, I 
thought it most prudent to avoid, as my health was 
not equal to being full dressed and there by eight in 
the morning, so I postponed the pleasure till the next 

* At Leicester House, museum of natural history ; contained 26,000 

* Took thirty-seven days to dispose of by auction. 

3 Celebrated riding-school and circus, then held at the Royal Grove, 

* A theatre. Grimaldi, the famous clown, acted there. 



1786 year, as everybody seem'd to think it will be annual. 
We went to a very fine collection of Des Enfans' 
pictures, and went with Caroline to see the great fish 
balloon ^ at the Pantheon - and Kensington Gardens. 

June ^th. — Went with the Ewers for a week to 
Mr. Creuz^'s, Layton Stone, Essex. Phil was this 
summer promoted to a lieutenancy in the Guards. 

August igth. — Went to my mother's for the races 
at Reading. The first opening of the new town-hall, 
a fine room 74 by 36, not including the recesses at 
each end for the two judges. 

October igtk. — We went to Mr. Powneys, Ives 
Place, for a few days ; while there we went to see the 
stag turn'd out,* a pretty sight on a fine day, as there 
is generally a large party with his Majesty. 

The loth of October was the first of the subscrip- 
tion assemblies at Henley, which our son Phil had set 
on foot. All the neighbourhood there. 

November i6tL — Went to Mr. Ewer's, at Clapham, 
for a week. We went one morning to town, and saw 
the ** artificial flower-garden," a pretty invention, worth 
seeing once ; all kinds of flowers in paper, put into 
beds of earth, and box edging, sand walks between. 
We breakfasted that morning with Lord Bayham."* 

1787 In February Mr. and Mrs. Powys, and daughter, 
went to Bath for six weeks, their son Phil joining 
them there. To Clapham in May, where she says : 
Went to see the waxwork at Spring Gardens, 
and after, the three figures of the King of Prussia. 

1 The first air balloon ascended at Versailles, September 1783, in the 
presence of Louis XVI. and his family. 

* The Pantheon, built in 1770-71, for concerts, balls, promenades, &c. 

3 The Royal Stag-hounds. 

^ Mr. Pratt, just then made Viscount Bayham, his father becoming 
Earl Camden. 


The exhibition of pictures this year but indifferent, 1787 
and Ranelagh^ very thin, till the last four or five 

May 2yrd. — We went to see the famous painted 
ceiling at Whitehall Chapel, formerly the banqueting 
house. It was painted by Rubens (and was cleaned 
by Cipriani' in 1786). The room itself, a most noble 
one, 36 yards long and 24 yards high, and 18 over 
the windows ; under the organ, now blocked up, that 
which Charles I. came out from upon the scaffold. 

June 2nd. — Mr. Powys, Miss Ewer, and myself 
went to the music at the Abbey ;* got there by half- 
past eight from Clapham, and the doors were opened 
by nine ; but, though entered with the first group, 
could only have the second row in the gallery — no 
doubt all fiird before the principal doors are open'd. 
The performance that day " Israel in Egypt." The 
chorus certainly very noble ; but I own, upon the 
whole, I am disappointed in the sound, tho' not the 
sight. Certainly the coup d'oeil is beyond imagination, 
taking at one view the royal family, so numerous a 
company, and the orchestra ; but for music, I must 
say IVe been entertained as well at the music-room 
in Oxford, where there is not one pillar to deaden 
the sound, and a less space than Westminster Abbey 
for the vocal performers to show the compass of their 

N.B. — I forgot, in the year 1785, to set down our 
having been to see Mr. Walpole's* at Strawberry 

^ Ranelagh ceasing to draw, was shut in 1803, and pulled down 1805. 

' John Battista Cipriani, bom at Pistoia, Tuscany, circ 1727, came 
to England in 1755 ; died December 1785. 

' Westminster Abbey. 

* Horace Walpole bought Strawberry Hill, May 1747, from Mrs. 


1787 Hill; but I found a memorandum of many curious 
pictures I had seen there, and some other things ; but 
I suppose there never was a house which contained 
so many valuable rarities. Among the pictures I set 
down were : — 

Madame de Maintenon. 

Madame de la Valliere. 

Comtesse de Grammont (Miss Hamilton). 

Madame de Sevign^, when young ; very beautiful. 

Ditto, small, with that of Madame de Grignan, her daughter. 

An original and only picture of Ninon de TEnclos. 

Original of Henry VIII., by Hans Holbein. 

Cowley, when a boy, by Sir Peter Lely. 

Numbers of fine miniatures, and other curiosities. 

The most beautiful inlaid marble chimney-piece.^ 
Fine old delf. Cardinal Wolsey's red hat.^ On a 
toilet are the combs of Queen Elizabeth, Mary, Queen 
of Scots, and that King Charles used for his wig. A 
small clock in the library which belonged to Ann 
Boleyn ; * a curious picture of flowers done in feathers ; 
a chair of a high priest. Some ebony chairs,* six 
hundred years old, so hard nothing can penetrate 
them ; cane bottoms. Four drawings of Madame de 
Grignan's castle in Provence ; Johanah's chair, five 
hundred years old, made of the Glastonbury thorn, 
and numbers of curiosities in cabinets, that we hardly 
had time to see one quarter of them. 

Henley Bridge,* a most beautiful stone one, finished 

^ Copied from the tomb of Edward the Confessor; white marble, 
inlaid with scagliola. 

• Found by Bishop Burnet, Clerk of the Closet, in the Great Wardrobe. 
3 (;iven her by Henry VIII. 

* Walpole mentions these chairs as costing him a handsome sum, and 
calls ebony " the luxury of our ancestors." 

' The architect was Mr. William Hay ward. Walpole states General 
Conway regulated the bend of the arches. 


in the year 1786. In each centre arch is a head in 1787 
stone, carved by Mrs. Darner, daughter of General 
Conway and Lady Ailesbury — one of " Thames," the 
other " I sis." 

Of this bridge the following lines were written by 
the Rev. Thomas Powys : — 

'* Through this fair arch henceforth with conscious pride. 
Let Thames and Isis ^ roll their mingled tides, 
Hastening to swell old Ocean's watery stores. 
And sound their triumphs to his farthest shores. 
Tho' Tiber's classic waves distinguished flow, 
Our English rivers claim superior praise, 
From Darner's sculpture, and from Denham's lays." 

July 2^rd, 1787. — The house at Fawley (Court), 
was whitened this year. 

Augtist gth. — We were at the musical festival 
at St. Laurence's Church, Reading, to hear Mrs. 

August 2jth. — Went to the Reading races. The 
last ball a very brilliant one. 

September %th. — My brother went to Lord Cam- 
den's, and from thence to Lord Bayham's,* Wilder- 
ness, Kent. 

September 27M. — Thursday, we went to Maiden- 
head races the middle day. The whole of the royal 
family there. We dined at Mrs. Winford's, Thames 

In November spent a week with Mrs. Winford. 

December ist. — My brother returned from his Lon- 
don residence as king's chaplain. 

December 24/^ — A deep snow as usual now on 

* Miss Freeman of Fawley Court sat for the head of Isis. 

* Celebrated singer, who died in 18 18. 

^ Lord Camden's son, once pupil to Rev. T. Pow>'s. 


1787 Christmas Eve for some years; our road blocked up 
till January 7th. 

1788 January 20th, 1788.— My brother went to Mr. 
Annesley s to stand godfather and christen his son 

April 2^rd. — Went to London to see a fine col- 
lection of pictures, Dr. Newton's, late Bishop of Bris- 
tol ; and the next month went to see Mr. Aufrere s 
collection, which are indeed most capital, as none bad, 
and one of each fam'd master. Mr. Aufrere s garden 
too is laid out in great taste ; a curious collection of 
plants, a very large room in it of the finest prints, and 
a temple where the view of the Thames is uncommonly 
grand, and where the rowing matches, they informed 
us, are seen to the greatest advantage. 

May igl/i. — Sir Richard Cope was so obliging as 
to give me two tickets to see the procession of the 
Knights of the Bath in Westminster Abbey, one of 
which I gave to my friend Miss Ewer. We went 
through the Jerusalem Chamber with great ease to 
our seats, which were the best in front, the procession 
passing close to us, and. the box erected for her 
Majesty and the princesses close to us, so that we had 
an excellent view of the whole. 

May 22nd. — Went to see Osterley Park,^ Mrs. 
Child's. The house is good, well furnished, and some 
fine pictures ; but the situation dreary and unpleasant, 
and the menagerie, which for years I had heard so 
much of, fell far short of my expectation ; that of Lady 
Ailesbury s at Park Place is vastly superior in ele- 
gance ; nor were there so many different birds as I 
have seen at others. The gallery is 133 feet long; 
at the upper end a very capital picture by Vandyke, 

' Now the Earl of Jersey's, formerly Sir Thomas Gresham's. 


Charles I. on horseback, the Duke D'Espernon 1788 
standing by him. At the lower end of the gallery 
is the Duke of Buckingham on horseback, prime 
minister to Charles I., who was stabb'd by Felton, 
(a Vandyke). Over the chimney-piece Lord Stafford, 
whole length, and a large white dog, likewise by 
Vandyke ; a beggar boy by Murillo, and many other 
fine ones. The ceiling of the staircase by Rubens.^ 
The room call'd the Etruscan apartment, all the 
designs from Herculaneum, executed by Berners. 
The Gobelin tapestry room is done in wreaths of 
flowers from nature, in the most elegant taste, and 
numbers of curious birds, formerly in the menagerie. 
One room, call'd the English bed-chamber, as all the 
furniture is English ; a bed embroider d on apple- 
green satin, a large pier-glass, the first plate made in 
England, &c., &c. 

May 2yrd. — I took Caroline to see Mrs. Siddons 
for the first time. It was the new tragedy of ** The 
Regent," written by Mr. Greathead, in which Mrs. 
Siddons shone with her usual lustre ; and her brother, 
Mr. Kemble, was very great as the Regent. Like- 
wise saw *'The Romp," in which Mrs. Jordan so 
much excels, and the inimitable Miss Farren^ in the 
part of Estafania in " Rule a Wife and have a Wife." 

May 26lh. — We were at Merlin's exhibition in the 
morning and Dillon's exhibition of philosophical fire- 
works in the evening. During the intervals Mr. Cart- 
wright performs on the musical glasses, the sounds 
on which are most harmonious, whilst Mr. Dillon 
lights up an aerostatic branch suspended from the 

1 Represents the apotheosis of William 1 1 1., Prince of Orange, brought 
from Holland by Sir Francis Child. 
^ Afterwards Lady Derby. 


1788 cupola of the saloon, in which light is produced in an 
instant of time, which Mr. Dillon carries at will, and 
extinguishes in an instant ; wonderfully pretty. The 
portable hygaeian chair, by which persons may swing 
themselves with* safety, at Merlin^s, are very clever, 
and the physicians say are extremely conducive to 
health ; their motion I found easy and pleasing. The 
mechanical easy-chairs for the gouty and infirm seem 
very useful, and are only fourteen or twenty guineas ; 
but the hygaeian chairs were ;^40, too expensive for 
most people merely for pleasure. 

May 22,rd. — Mr. Powys and myself were at the 
play at Richmond House. It was the first night of 
performing ** False Appearances," a piece General 
Conway translated from the French of Les Dehors 
Trompeurs. The characters were as follows : — 

The Baron 

. Earl of Derby. 

Monsieur de Forlis 

. Captain Merry. 

Champagne . 

. Captain Howarth. 

The Marquis . 

. Lord Henry Fitzgerald 

The Countess . 

. Hon. Mrs. Damer. 

Celia . . . . 

. Miss Hamilton. 

Lisette . 

. Mrs. Bruce. 

Locayle . 

. Miss Campbell. 

The prologue and epilogue were both very clever ; 
wrote by General Conway, and spoken with great 
spirit by Lord Derby, and Mrs. Damer. The whole 
was amazingly well acted. The house filled with all 
the fine people in town. 

June 2nd. — Caroline went with a party to Vauxhall 
for the first time, but it did not strike her so much as 

June 6th. — We were to have returned home, but 
as we had many preceding days been disappointed of 


hearing Mr. Sheridan's long-expected speech,^ and I 1788 
had a ticket for one of the best seats in the hall, Mr. 
Powys was so good as to insist on staying, tho* he did 
not choose to go himself, and refused a peer s ticket 
for the same day. I much wished to hear this so 
celebrated an orator. I got in, and sat most commo- 
diously in a front row. Never was anything so 
crowded as the hall, every part full and of the highest 
rank. Must I own myself greatly disappointed ? Few, 
perhaps, would be so honest as to give their sentiments 
so contrary to the multitude ; but indeed Mr. Sheridan 
answer'd not my expectation as to oratory, eloquence, 
or manner, the latter totally unpleasing, as a con- 
tinual thumping upon his desk and most vehement 
passion never surely can be styled elegance. He 
spoke four hours and a quarter. We had been once 
before that day, when Middleton was examined, who 
could not recollect one thing that was ask'd him. The 
hall ^ was then very thin, but on the day of Sheridan's 
speech the sight was really magnificently grand. The 
Duchess of Gloucester and her children sat just by us, 
likewise the Duchess of Cumberland ; all the ladies in 
muslin gowns and undrest caps, as hoops wore at 
that time. 

The celebrated painter, Mr. Gainsborough, died 
soon after we came down this year. I must not 
forget to mention seeing that capital picture, "The 
Woodman," a copy from life, whole length. I think 
I never saw a more pleasing portrait, and must now 
be sold for an immense sum. There was a beggar 
boy too, a fine piece. The exhibitions were thought 
of but indifferently this year. That charming picture 

^ On the impeachment of Warren Hastings. 
^ Westminster Hall, where the trial took place. 


1788 by Copley, "The Death of the Earl of Chatham," 
there are in it fifty-five portraits, all taken from life. 
I have a printed description of it, but too long to 
write out here. I had seen it before, but was vastly 
pleas'd to have a second view of it at the Bishop 
of Bristol's exhibition in Spring Gardens. Tis now 
to be sold ; what a pity if Lord Chatham's family do 
not purchase it. 

August 7th. — Lord Bayham, who came to Fawley 
the day before, took my brother with him to Breck- 
nock Priory in Wales, a grouse-shooting. 

August 20th. — We went to my mother's at Read- 
ing for the race-time. Miss Ewer met us there. 

The races not good, the balls tolerably full, con- 
sidering how many families at this season leave their 
seats in the country for the different watering-places 
now in vogue. The middle day went to the play, 
Thornton's Company being then in the town. 

August 29M. — Returned to Fawley, where Mr. 
Ewer met us ; we went to see the Druid's Temple 
that General Conway has just put up at Park Place ; ^ 
it was brought from Jersey, being a present to the 
General from the people of that island. The stones 
are hardly of height sufficient to make any figure 
at a distance from the beautiful spot 'tis now 
placed on. 

Went to pay a visit to the Birch's, St. Leonard's 
Hill near Windsor, a place they had purchas'd this 
summer. An excellent house and pretty situation. 
One day dined at Mr. Fisher's, one of the Canons 
of Windsor ; saw the castle, where are great improve- 
ments since I was last there, four or five apartments 
newly furnished. Mr. West's fine painting, at which 

^ Had been placed there in 1785. 


he was then at work ; the beautiful embroidery round 1788 
the canopy of the queen s throne ; the superb bed of 
the same work is a good deal faded since I last saw 
it; the beautiful altar-piece in St. Georges Chapel, 
painting by Mr. West, is a capital performance. 

The Dean of Bristol^ and Mrs. Hallam drank 
tea there (St Leonard's Hill). 

\()th October. — On Friday began our Winter 
Henley ball, and was a very full one, the whole 
neighbouring families making it a point to attend. 
Got home about four, as there is always a supper 
and dancing after. 

We were very gay this autumn, having a very 
tolerable set of strollers at Henley ; most of the 
ladies bespoke plays, as Lady Ailesbury, Mrs. Damer, 
both Mrs. Freemans, Mrs. Fanshawe,^ Miss Grote,* 
myself, &c., and as all the families attended each 
other s nights, we had very crowded houses, which 
lasted all that moon. 

November \^th. — Tom, (her second son), went to 
keep his term at Oxford. • 

November iSiA. — My brother went into waiting 
as Kings Chaplain at St. James's, his Majesty then 
very ill at Windsor. His unhappy malady just then 
become public, thought by most people owing to the 
Cheltenham waters being too powerful for one who 
has lived so very abstemious as the King ever has 
done, and using such vast exercise without drinking 
any wine. He was removed to Kew soon after this, 
the queen and princesses going there too. Sure never 
any one was ever more to be pitied than her Majesty, 

* Father of Hallam the historian, grandfather of Tennyson's friend. 
' Living at Holmwood, Shiplake. 
' Living at Badgemore, Henley. 


1788 as no couple could be happier than they were before 
this greatest of all misfortunes. 

N,B. — The King went to Kew 29th November. 

November igth. — We went for one night to Mr. 
Lefevre s, Heckfield, Hampshire, returned thro* Read- 


ing, took post-horses at Pangbourne and sent our own 
back, and from thence went to Mr. James's at Langley 
Hall, Berks ; got there to dinner ; we had never been 
there since his new house was finished, which is a very 
noble one. Large hall, drawing-room, two eating- 
rooms, library, an inner hall, grand staircase, and 
some small rooms, many apartments above so spacious 
and convenient ; out of every bed-chamber a large 
dressing-room, and light closets as powdering rooms 
to each. The grounds now laying out. We were 
particularly happy to see Lady Jane so happily married, 
to a man so pleasing as Mr. James, as I believe their 
first interview was at Reading races some years since, 
when she was with us at Hardwick, then Miss Pratt.^ 
. . . She has now four fine little ones. . . . They 
have a fine fortune, which they spend elegantly, with- 
out any form or ceremony, making every friend partake 
of the happiness and good-humour they so eminently 
possess themselves. 

November 25M. — Left Langley, and met my 
mother at Micklem's at Reading, as she had just 
parted with her house there. A severe frost set in 
two days before. 

December iith. — Our fourth and last winter as- 
sembly (Henley), which ended very brilliantly. 

24///. — No more snow, but the frost so intense 
as that continued on th^ ground which fell the 24th 
November. No rain all that time, or for near nine 

^ Daughter of Earl Camden. 


months to do any good. The 31st December was 1788 
the coldest day by the weather-glass of the intense 
cold of 1788. 

January 6th> — Tenants' annual feast at Fawley 1789 
Court. We were there together with other principal 
tenants. The young people all as usual danced with 
the tenants six or eight dances ; then we came up to 
cards and supper. The day always passes very agree- 
ably, as it gives pleasure to see so many people all so 
happy. Many clever songs were sung by the gentle- 
men as well as farmers, and droll toasts given after 
dinner. Among the toasts were : — 

1. May the rich be charitable, and the poor happy. 

2. Short shoes and long corns to sdl the enemies of Great 

3. May all great men be honest, and all honest men great. 

4. Peace and Plenty. 

<)th. — Our two sons at a ball at Mr. George Van- 
si ttarts, at Bisham Abbey, near Marlow. It snowed ; 
hard frost continued. 

On January 12th snowed very hard, and drifted till 
our road was impassable. 

On 13th rained amazingly hard all night, so as to 
fill the ponds which had long been dry. The two 
new ones made last summer ran over, to the great joy 
of the farmers and poor, who have been infinitely 
distressed for water. Mrs. Freeman forced to send 
water-cart to Henley. Three wells faiFd in that 
town, and we lived daily in fear for my brother's, as it 
goes 123 yards deep. 

January 1 6th. — The snow greatly melted, but still 
we were obliged to set men to make a way thro', and 
it froze so hard on the 1 5th that about us was a sheet 
of ice. 


1789 Heard of the death of Miss Campbell, daughter 
of Lord William, and niece to Lady Ailesbury, who 
brought her up. She died on the 12th January. Her 
Ladyship and General Conway were almost incon- 
solable. The General wrote an elegant copy of verses 
on this melancholy event. 

On 2 1 St, having been twice prevented by the 
weather, we set out for Mr. Annesley's, Bletchingdon 
Park. We had not been there since the alterations he 
has made. IVe mentioned being there before, and 
then spoke of an amazing grand staircase, which for 
its vast extent is described, I think, in Plot s ** History 
of Oxfordshire " as one of the finest in England ; but 
now in the same space it took up, is as large a one 
as one generally sees, a fine saloon and drawing-room, 
besides a very fine hall, which was the entrance before, 
only from that first hall you formerly entered a second, 
which was entirely taken up by the vast staircase. 
The present eating-room is most elegant, having a 
recess at each end taken off with pillars of Sienna 
marble. We had a large party there, besides most 
days Oxford gentlemen to dine. 

The gentlemen were shooting or hunting in diffe- 
rent parties each morning, as Mr. Annesley keeps a 
pack of harriers, and, with some more of that neigh- 
bourhood, a joint pack of fox-hounds. On Wednes- 
day the 28th we returned home. Young Phil went 
that evening to a play, ball, and supper given by Lord 
Barrymore.^ We had all tickets, but only went to the 
play on the Saturday following. 

Jamiary ^isi. — Lord Barrymore had the last 

^ Richard, Lord Barrymore, bom August 14, 1769, hence in his nine- 
teenth year. 



summer (1788) built a very elegant playhouse^ at 1789 
Wargrave, had a Mr. Young from the Opera- House 
to paint the scenes, which were extremely pretty. 
His Lordship and friends performed three nights one 
week. We were all there the 31st. It was extremely 
full of the neighbouring families. The play was ** The 
Confederacy" and "The Midnight Hour." The 
characters as follows : — 


Lord Barrymore. 



Mr. LowDER. 

Money Trap 


Mr. Thompson. 

Jessamy . 

Mr. Davies. 

Clip . . . . 

Captain Dive. 


1 Mr. Anoelo, Jun. (friends of 
( Lord B.'s. 

A^m^r%f • • • 4 


Flippanta . 

> • 

Mrs, Jackson ) , 

Corinna . 

1 ■ 
> • 

Mrs. Benson ( o-u ° . » 


Mrs. Thornton ? Company. 

Clarissa . 


Mr, Cloggei 

t • 

A Gentleman. 

Mr, Amblet 

1 • 

1 Edwin, Jun. (a most incom 
( parable actor). 

In ** 

The Midnight Hour.'* 

Marquis . 

Captain Dive, 


Mr, Angelo, Jun. 

Sebastian . 

Lord Barrymore. 

Ambrose . 

Mr. Barry. 

Matthew . 

Mr. Davie. 

Nicholas . 

Edwin, Jun. 

Julia . 

Mrs. Ball, 


Mrs. Jackson. 


Mrs. Thornton. 

The cake, negus, and all kinds of wines were 
brought between the acts ; the cake alone one night 
they say cost ;^20. The ball and supper on the 

^ Total cost of building this theatre from first to last was over 
j£6o,ooo. First wardrobe 2000 guineas. It stood on what is now the 
kitchen-garden of Mr. F. Selous, the present owner of Barrymore House, 
Wargrave. It held seven hundred. Managers, John Edwin, and T. W. 
Williams, alias " Anthony Pasquin." 


1789 Wednesday very elegant, as March ^ had orders to get 
everything possible. A service of plate was sent 
from London for the occasion. We hear his Lord- 
ship is going to build a ball and supper-room adjoining 
to his theatre. 

March 2'^rd. — We all went to tea at Mr. Cooper's,^ 
at Henley, to see the illuminations at Henley town 
on the King's^ recovery. Every house was lighted 
up, and as we walked about for hours in different 
parties from the neighbourhood, the whole made a 
very fine sight. Fawley Court looked vastly well 
from the bridge. On the 25th my brother illuminated 
the parsonage, which look'd amazingly pretty from the 
bottom of the lawn, and at many distant spots, being 
a white house. We had the farmers, their wives, 
&c., to dinner. Had a large bonfire, and barrel of 
ale given to the village, and the day was pass'd 
quite to the satisfaction of all here on so truly joyful 
an occasion. 

April i^th. — Dined at Mrs. Grote's,* Badgemore. 

April 2?>th. — Went to stay some time with Miss 
Ewer at Clapham. Whilst there went often to 
Ranelagh, plays, &c., the Shakespeare Gallery of 
Boydell's exhibition of pictures ; the sale of the late 
Mr. Gainsborough's pictures ; his celebrated Wood- 
man, whole length, sold to Lord Gainsborough for 

Caroline learn'd to dance of Zuchelli. 

June the ?>th. — Went to Ranelagh the night after 

^ Barrett March, owner of the Red Lion Hotel, Henley-on-Thames. 
Lord B. gave a ball in the Red Lion Hotel, February 1789. 
' Gislingham Cooper at Phyllis Court, Henley. 

• From his first attack of insanity, begun the previous year. 

* Wife of George Grote, father of George Grote, the historian of 


the Spanish ambassador s f<&te on the recovery of his 1789 
Majesty, who had ordered everything to be left in the 
same state, that the public might view it, and very 
magnificent indeed it must have been. Four rows of 
illuminated lamps round the Rotunda, in many vary- 
ing forms, as baskets of flowers, wreaths of roses, &c. 
All the boxes were form'd like Turkish tents, with 
each a festoon curtain that drew up at once when the 
suppers were placed in the inside, which was done by 
a gallery being made round the Rotunda behind. 
This must have had a wonderful pretty effect, as each 
box was well illuminated, a waiter at each in a 
Spanish dress, and a gentleman out of livery. The 
Queen and Princess supped in a pavilion made for the 
occasion, where the orchestra is on common nights, 
that had a festoon curtain of white lute-string, with 
a gold fringe four inches broad, the back part hung 
with pea -green satin embroidered with coloured 
flowers. The supper was in a very curious set of 
Sevre china, which the next morning was sent as a 
present to her Majesty. Before supper the royal 
family were placed in another box, fitted up for them, 
opposite to a Spanish stage erected for that night, to 
show the Queen some Spanish dancing which children 
performed in the dress of that nation. But what was 
the most elegant display of magnificence was a lottery 
for the ladies, who had each a ticket given them as 
they entered, wrote on the outside such a number ; 
** No blanks." Miss Sturt had the great prize, worth 
150 guineas, a watch and chain. I must not here 
omit to mention the name that young lady went by 
at this time. Being exceedingly pretty and very little, 
she was always styl'd "the pocket Venus." The 
Queen's prize was a picture of the King of Spain, 



1789 set with diamonds, the Princess Royals a toothpick 
case, and all the ladies some elegant trifle. We 
heard the lottery cost £700. Some fine gold cups, 
dishes, &c., used at the Queen's table were likewise 
sent to different people as presents. In short, the 
whole was magnificent, and more so, it is said, than 
any of the other ambassadors. The mat was taken 
up from the floor and green baize put down in com- 
partments ; for the convenience of many dancing parties 
the boards were left in spaces for them. 

July 7th. — The Dean of Bristol, Dr. Hallam,^ his 
lady and daughter, came to spend two days at Fawley. 

July ^th. — We dined at Mr. Finch's at Ewelme,* 
in Oxfordshire. In the church of this place is a very 
fine old monument of the Duchess of Suffolk, grand- 
daughter of the poet Chaucer ; her father, Thomas 
Chaucer, who died 1435, likewise is buried here, under 
a black marble tomb. Ewelme was the chief place 
of his residence. By his wife Maud he had one 
daughter named Alice, who was thrice married, first 
to Sir John Philips, Knight ; after to Thomas Mon- 
tacute, Earl of Salisbury, who left her very rich ; her 
third husband was the famous William de la Pole, 
Earl and afterwards Duke of Suffolk. He founded 
an hospital^ at Ewelme, call'd Gods House, still kept 
up. The Yorkists seized him in his passage in Dover 
roads, and cut off his head upon the side of the boat. 
His body was buried in the Charter House Hall. 
The Duchess survived him several years, and, after 
an honourable life, died at Ewelme in 1475. I took 

1 Father of the historian, and grandfather of the Hallam of " In 

* Word derived from "Ea" and "Whelm," meaning outgush of 
water. A beautiful clear stream rises here. 

' Twelve almsmen occupy the hospital, who receive los. each a week. 


the above account from Ogre's "Life of Chaucer." 1789 
The monument of her in St. John's Chapel, in 
Ewelme Church, has been a very magnificent one. 
There are eight figures on the base of the tomb, each 
holding a different coat of the family arms. There 
are three compartments — in the lower one a skele- 
ton,^ the ceiling of that very finely inlaid, but difficult 
to see. A looking-glass laid down gives a perfect 
view. The Duchess's figure is finely executed — a ring 
on her finger very like an old one I have of Lady 
Twysden's,* and much resembles some I've latterly 
seen made this year 1789, so generally do fashions 
come round in a course of years. The tiles with 
which the whole church seems to have been paved 
are very curiously inlaid, and I was told by an anti- 
quarian each tile is the arms of some one of the 
family. Over one of the pillars is a good stone head 
of Edward III., like his pictures, and the iron is still 
fastened to the pulpit which formerly held the hour- 
glass. Mrs. Piozzi,' in her tour of 1785, mentions 
going to hear a famous preacher at Dresden who 
kept an hour-glass by him, finishing with strange 
abruptness the moment it expired. This was of use 
among our distant provinces as late as Gay's time. 
He mentions it in his pastorals, saying, "he preach'd 
the hour-glass in her praise quite out." There was 
a palace at Ewelme, built, as they suppose, by 
Richard II. Now small remains of it, and the whole 
monument begins to be defaced, which is a great pity, 
as it likewise is that great families are not left rich, 

^ Supposed to represent the Duchess in her shroud. The upper 
figure on the tomb is one of the three known examples of femailes 
wearing the Order of the Garter placed round the arm. 

* Mr. Powys's great-grandmother. 

'Mrs. Piozzi, formerly Johnson's Mrs. Thralc. 


1789 to perpetuate in this pleasing manner the memories 
of their ancestors. 

August ijlh. — My brother Powys went to Bristol. 
That night we all went to Lord Barrymore's theatre 
at Wargrave ; the plays ** The Beau's Stratagem " 
and "The Romp." His Lordship acted ** Scrub" 
amazingly well. 

August 2otk. — Mr. James, of Langley Hall, came 
to us to go to the ball at Wargrave on the next day. 
Lady Jane was prevented coming, as one of their 
children was ill. On the Friday we went to War- 
grave ; were not to be there till twelve, on account 
of the play being later that night, as they began 
later for the Prince of Wales. ^ A box had been 
built for his Royal Highness, and a ball-room and 
elegant supper-room out of it, just finished. After 
the play the Prince and company entered the ball- 
room. His Royal Highness began, and they danced 
two dances before supper. Caroline, who we had 
given leave to go as in our own neighbourhood, tho' 
too young (not fifteen), for public assemblies, danc'd 
with Mr. James. The supper was announced at one. 
The circular room one of the prettiest for such an 
occasion I ever saw; the tables round the circle set 
off the most elegant entertainment that possibly could 
be, (from London), to the greatest advantage. The 
dome was lighted with coloured lamps, and the side- 
board, likewise circular, under the dome, at which 
no more than six of his lordship s own servants ^ 
attended, and with such uncommon cleverness that 
no one of the company but had everything wished for 

^ Rooms to dress were prepared for the Prince of Wales at Wargrave 
Hill ; not sufficient accommodation at Barrymore House. 
' They were dressed in scarlet and gold. 


in an instant. We fancied there would have been 1789 
a separate table for the Prince, but he sat himself 
down amongst the rest without the least ceremony, 
seem'd quite free, easy, and perfectly good-humoured 
the whole evening, talk'd to almost the whole com- 
pany, took particular care to turn every one by the 
hand in going down the dances, which accomplish- 
ment, to be sure, he particularly excels in, more than 
most others. With such ease and grace he dances 
that he was sure to be known by his manner, tho' 
without star or any other signature of his birth. He 
retired after two more dances, and set off in his post- 
chaise for York. What a pity such an accomplished 
young man, knowing so well how to make himself 
admired and beloved, can be wanting in duty to such 
parents as his ; but time and his own good sense will 
very soon, I've no doubt, make him see the impro- 
priety, even to his own future happiness, in this 
juvenile conduct. We got home about six, much 
indeed pleased with the evening's entertainment. 

August 2\th. — We all went to Reading for the 
race-time. Lord Barrymore* was steward. Of course 
the sport was good, and assemblies brilliant. We 
were at the last only. 

November 30///. — Young Phil and Tom went with 
General Conway to the Blenheim play. We were all 
offered tickets, but the weather was then so bad we 
declined going. 

The Miss Michells and us dined and lay at Mr. 
Gardiner's,^ Hardwick. Returned to Fawley about 
four, drank tea at Mr. Horne*s, at Wargrave, and at 
nine went to Lord Barrymore s, who had invited some 

^ He gave a fifty-guinea cup to be run for. 
'Mr. Gardiner was then renting Hardwick. 


1789 part of our neighbourhood to a "little dance," as he 
expressed it on his cards. ♦It was a very agreeable 
small party, a very elegant supper. Two long tables in 
the circular room, as not company suflficient for those 
round the room as before, and in the centre was a 
stove, which made it charming warm. My lord, and 
one of his brothers, and Mrs, Bertie sang some good 
catches after supper, which, as all have charming 
voices, was very pleasant. Dancing a good deal after 
supper, made it between six and seven before we got 
home the next morning. 

December 2gth. — On Tuesday the 29th our nearest 
neighbour, Mrs. Freeman, of the Park (Henley), was 
so obliging as to give our son, Phil, a ball on his 
approaching nuptials ; ^ all this vicinity and some other 
company was invited. The ball-room was hung with 
festoons of flowers, and the windows illuminated, the 
supper magnificent. They danced again after supper, 
and got home about four. 

1790 January ist. — Our fourth and last Henley ball for 
the season ; they had been kept up with great 6clat, 
and always attended by the whole agreeable neigh- 

January ^tk. — On the Tuesday we were at Lord 
Barrymore s play at Wargrave, the last of the three 
nights, as they had acted on the Saturday and Mon- 
day — the plays, "A Trip to the Jubilee," **The 
Citizen," and ** Don Juan." My Lord acted in all of 
them as well as possible. In the first, *' Beau 
Clincher," ''Philpot" in "The Citizen," "Scara- 
mouch " in the last. The theatre was amazingly 

^ He was engaged to Miss Louisa Michell, daughter and co-heiress 
of Richard Michell, of Culham Court, Berks. 


crowded, the Duchess of Bolton, 1 the Cravens, 1790 
Poyntzs, Lord Inchiquin, &c., and General Conway, 
Lady Ailesbury, &c., &c. Mr. Goddall perform 'd 
"Sir Harry Wildair" and " Maria" in "The Citizen." 
Many of my Lords friends acted, and others from 
Thornton's Company. 

On Friday the 8th January his Lordship gave 'a 
masqued ball, to which we declined going, tho' he 
obligingly desired we would send for as many tickets 
as we chose. Caroline being too young for such an 
entertainment, and the two Miss Michells not wishing 
to go, the more ancient part of the family would not 
go without them. We heard it was very grand. The 
Prince of Wales* and many of the nobility, in all 
about 470. 

January i \th. — Mr. Powys, my brother, and young 
Phil went to London to settle the writings for his 
marriage. Phil took lodgings in Bond Street, and 
Mr. Powys and my brother returned till the lawyers 
had finished, for us all to go up. The two Miss 
Michells went from Culham Court to their house in 
North Audley Street. 

February 2nd. — At a very elegant ball and supper 
at Mr. Clayton's, Harleyford. 

February 18. — Our dear young Phil married to 
Miss Louisa Michcll, at St. George's Church, Hanover 
Square. My brother Powys performed the ceremony. 
We all, with Miss Ewer, came from Clapham, after- 
wards breakfasted in North Audley Street. About 
one o'clock the new married pair set off in their post- 

^ Second wife of the sixth Duke. She and Lord Barrymore invented 
a special language, which was only known to their set, done by arranging 
one vowel and one consonant to each word. Vide Pasquin* 

' The Prince remained unmasked the whole evening. 


1790 chaise for Culham Court for a week. Miss Michell 
went to Mr. Lockwood's/ in town, till their return. 

March 4M. — At Co vent Garden Theatre to see 
"The Dramatist," "Capt. Cook," &c. 

March 22nd. — Went to Drury Lane Theatre, 
•'The Belle's Stratagem" and (Mrs. Jordan's) ** Spoilt 
Child," the first performance. 

April 1 2th. — We were at the professional concert, 
Hanover Square, Marchese Mara and Cramer ; and 
heard them also at the Opera on the 15th. 

29/^. — Went to the Shakespeare and Macklin's 
galleries of pictures, and likewise the exhibition at 
Somerset House. 

June 2nd. — Dr. and Miss Cooper came to fetch 
Caroline, to go with them to the review on the 
following day. The first time I had ever parted for 
a night with my dear girl, tho' then fifteen. 

23^^/. — Caroline was confirmed at Henley Church 
by the Bishop of Oxford. 

i2^thjuly. — We went to the Annesleys, Bletching- 
don Park. On 17th drove to Blenheim round the 
park. Annesley drove Mr. Powys in the phaeton and 
six. Mrs. A. Caroline and I by turns in her pony- 
chaise, and the dear little Arthur, went with one of us 
in the post-chaise. 

August 2 1st. — Mrs. Williams' water-party. Tom 
and Caroline invited to go with their brother from 
Culham. We went to breakfast at Mrs. Winfords, 
Marlow, and went in their boat to Sir George 
Youngs,* so saw Mr. Williams' barge, and heard the 
music. They went up to Clifden Spring, danced all 

^ The Lockwoods were country friends as well, living at Hambleden, 

* Formosa Place. 


the way. After a most elegant dinner on board the 1790 
barge, not back till between eleven and twelve at 

August 2^rd, — My brother went to Lord Cam- 
dens, and we to my mother s at Reading for the races 
and ball,^ Caroline for the first time. 

September iStA. — Died the Duke of Cumberland, 
brother to his Majesty, George III. We went into 
mourning for him Sunday the 26th, black silk with 
love ribbons. Changed mourning October 24th, and 
went out November 7th. 

September 21st. — Went to Lord Barry more's the- 
atre. The first time of opening since so enlarged. 
We had been to see the interior parts of it the week 
before, and most clever and superbly elegant it was. 
It now holds 400.^ The play, " Figaro " and *' Robin- 
son Crusoe," well performed three nights.* 

September 28M. — All of us, excepting my brother 
and Caroline, were at Lord Barrymore's masqued 
ball ; for our neighbours, finding the last year s had 
been conducted with such propriety, had all agreed 
to go, if we did. Our party consisted of the Park 
(Henley), Fawley Court, Culham Court, the Win- 
fords, and our own families. Got there by eleven, 
and home between six and seven. I may say we 
were very highly entertain'd. The whole beautiful 
theatre was laid into a ball-room. The rotunda, 
supper-room, and two others all decorated with fes- 

^ Lord Barrymore won three races at Reading, and fifty events on 
the turf this year ; out of 140 engagements. 

* It held 700 spectators. See General Magazine for March 1792, 
account by Gabriel Cox, the stage carpenter and designer. 

' Lord Barrymore was ** Antonio " and Mr. Ximenes " Double Fee " 
in " Figaro." In " Robinson Crusoe" Lord Barrymore played " Pierrot," 
and Delphini "Crusoe." At the end Delphini (once clown at Covent 
Garden) and Lord Barrymore danced the Pas Russe. 


1790 toons of flowers in the most elegant taste, and 
everything on the tables that could, I believe, be 
thought of. Numbers of fancy dresses and many 
good masques, and a great many black dominoes ; 
my lord and all his party in these, and unmasqed 
(except at times when in droll characters) ; Mr. 
Powys, myself, and our two sons in black dominoes. 
The company in general unmasqued in about two 
hours, and almost all at supper. The Prince and his 
friends were to have been there, but could not on 
account of the Duke of Cumberland's death ; but he 
desired it might not be put off.^ As it was so sud- 
den, it was almost impossible to have given all that 
were invited notice of its being defer'd. 

October 12th. — Our first Henley ball as agreeable 
as usual. 

October igth. — Second Henley ball. 

November ^th. — Walked to see Mr. Coopers place 
at Bix before his alterations, which he had just 
begun. His shrubbery and root-house finished last 
summer; very pretty. In the latter some pretty 
verses of his own writing. 

December gth. — We were at a private ball at Lord 
Barrymore s * (he gave one the week before, to which 
we were also invited). It was very pleasant and 
elegant as usual. His Lordship had added to the 
rotunda a great length since the Monday to make 
that the ball-room, as the other was carpeted all 
over and converted into a card-room.* The supper 

^ This ball was given by Lord Barrymore to celebrate his majority, 
attained August 14, 1790. It was at this ball the Margravine of Anspach 
recited a ballad while masqued. 

* September 30, this year, Lord Barrymore sent a turtle weighing 
150 lbs. for the electors' dinner at Reading. 

' Lord B. was very fond of quinze, and in one evening lost at it 
2800 guineas. 


was in two different rooms, after which his Lordship, 1 79^ 
&c., sang, and then the young peopled danced ; got 
home soon after six. 

December 20th. — Mr. Annesley of Bletchingdon 
chosen member for Oxford by a majority of 515. 

March 2nd. — Mr. Powys, Caroline, and myself 1791 
set out for Bath. Our son and daughter and Miss 
Michell went about ten days before us. Spent a 
very pleasant month there. Our lodgings in the 
new part of Bath — Portland Place. 

April ^th. — My brother went to London to preach 
as King's Chaplain. 

April ij^th. — We were all at Lord Barrymore's 
theatre at Wargrave ; ** The Rivals," ** Robinson 
Crusoe," and "Blue Beard"; at home about four in 
the morn. His Lordship performed ** Acres " as well 
as it could be done. 

On Saturday, June the 4th, the Kings birthnight, 
Miss Ewer was married to Mr. Shrimpton at St. 
George's, Bloomsbury, by my brother Powys. 

June Zth. — My brother went to his residence at 

June 2 1st. — A large party, thirteen of us, dined 
at General Conway's cottage at Park Place. (Either 
the ** Chinese Cottage " or Boat House. — Editor.) 

June 2^th. — A shocking accident John Heath, 
our coachman, who had been at home some days ill 
of a fever, got up unknown to his family, came to our 
house, and threw himself down into our well in a fit 
of frenzy. For a day and a half sent out parties to 
search, but at last, knowing he could not have been 
able to go any distance, drew the well. He was a 

* Through Earl Camden, the Rev. Thomas Powys was now a Pre- 
bend of Bristol, as well as his other benefices. 


1 79 1 very young man, and left a wife and three small 

July lytk. — Mr. Slaney^ died. He was so kind 
as to leave my three children fifty guineas each, and 
myself the value of about ;^20oo, if I survived his 
sister, Mrs. Keeling. As I had not the least reason to 
expect anything from so distant a relation, I must ever 
feel myself grateful for this testimony of his regard. 

July 2ist. — Miss Cooper came for a week, and 
we went on the 22 nd, a large party, to Clifden Spring 
by water, towed there and back in Mr. Freeman's 
new boat, a very elegant one. We did not dine, as 
usual, at the Spring, but borrowed Miss Winford*s 
Temple near Marlow, and there left our hampers of 
provisions till our return. 

July 2^th. — The Culham Court family went to 
Oxford, as young Phil was one of the stewards of 
the races, and Mr. Spencer being the other. The 
Duke* and Duchess of Marlborough would not (as 
usual) attend the diversion, but endeavoured to keep 
company from going ; but, to the universal satisfac- 
tion, the balls never were so brilliant. How strange 
that these parents seem ever to act contrary to most 
others, by giving dissatisfaction instead of pleasure 
to their children. 

August 6th. — I went in the morning to Lady 
Stapleton's* to pay the wedding visit to Lady De- 
spencer, who, with his Lordship,* was then at his 


^ John Slaney, of Norwich. 

' Third Duke of Marlborough. 

• Mary, daughter of H. Fane of Wormsley, Oxon, widow of Sir 
Thomas Stapleton of Greys Court, Oxon. 

^ Thomas Stapleton, of Greys Court, Oxon, succeeded to the barony 
in 1788. 


October wtk. — Went to the Reading county ball, 1791 
at the request of Mr. Annesley, their member. 

14M. — First Henley ball of that season ; very 
good one. 

18M November. — My brother went to residence 
at St. James's ; read private prayers to the royal 
family ; was at Court on the Thursday, when the 
Duchess of York ^ made her first public appearance. 

November 2^th. — On this day our dear grandson 
Henry Philip was born about noon. I was unfortu- 
nately so ill I could not be at Culham, as I had 
promised Louisa. 

December ^rd. — Went to one of Mr. Walker's 
lectures on astronomy at Henley, at which all the 
neighbourhood had attended. 

9/^. — Our Henley assembly. 

January 2nd. — We all went to Culham early in 1792 
the morning; from thence to Walgrave^ Church, to 
the christening of our grandson. His great-grand- 
mother, Mrs. Girle, was godmother, but as it was 
very bad weather, she was fearful of venturing from 
home, so I stood for her; Mr. Powys and our son 
Tom for themselves. 

January 6th. — Our last Henley ball for the season, 
finished with great ^clat and very full. 

January 20th. — On or about this day died my 
cousin, Mrs. Cooke, daughter of Mrs. Keeling, who 
is Mr. Slaney's sister. 

February igtk. — The deepest snow, and by far 
the coldest weather we had that year. 

February 2Zrd. — On this day died the celebrated 
painter, Sir Joshua Reynolds, aged 69. 

' Princess Royal of Prussia, married 29th September 1791. 
^ Wargrave, often then called Walgrave. 


1792 March \(^th. — At Lord Barry more's play at War- 
grave, and the 30th at another, **The Merry Wives 
of Windsor,"^ both amazingly well performed. 

N.B. — This was the last play acted, as the beau- 
tiful theatre was soon after taken down.* 

April lyth. — Miss Michell (sister of Mrs. Philip 
Lybbe Powys, junior), was married to Mr. West," 
brother to Lord Delaware, at St. George s, Hanover 
Square, by my brother Powys. The bride and bride- 
groom came down the same day to Culham Court, as 
Rose Hill was not then ready for them to live at. 

May stk. — On this day our son Philip took posses- 
sion of our beloved Hard wick,* and went with his 
family to reside there. On the 7th we all went for 
some days to Hard wick. 

May ^isL — A very elegant ball and supper, given 
at the town-hall, Reading, by Lord Radnor and the 
other officers of the militia. His Lordship was Lord 
Lieutenant of Berks. 

June \2th. — Mr. and Mrs. Shrimpton* came to 
Fawley. The next day we all went to Ascot races. 

June iStk. — Mr. Powys, Caroline, and myself, 
went to Dr. Coopers* at Sonning, and set off the 
next morning on our tour to the Isle of Wight. 

^ Also that time was performed **The Battle of Hexham," a musical 
drama, and " Blue Beard." 

* Lprd Barrymore's extravagance told even on his princely fortune. 
In May 1792 he sold his house in Piccadilly to the Duke of Queens- 
berry, known as " Old Q.," and now the theatre was dismantled and sold, 
October 15, 1792, by Christie & Co., to satisfy his creditors. 

' Hon. Frederick West, son of John, second Earl Delaware. 

* Hardwick had been let, ever since Mr. and Mrs. Powys let it in 
1784, to Mr. Gardiner. 

* Nde Ewer. 


* The Rev. Edward Cooper, LL.D., rector of Sonning, son of Gisling- 
ham Cooper, and his wife, Anne Whitelock. 




We had fixed to visit the Lakes, but the Doctor's 1792 
health was so indifferent we persuaded him from going 
so far, but as he ever found himself better by change 
of air, he was very desirous of taking some journey. 
The first day we went no farther than Basingstoke, 
went through Lord Rivers Park^ by Heckfield ; 'tis 
reckon'd a fine place, but I'm not partial to that part 
of Hants ; dined and lay at ** The Crown " — an excel- 
lent inn. Wednesday we proceeded to Winchester 
(to ** The George "). This city is situated in a valley 
through which runs the river Itchen. It was formerly 
the residence of the West Saxon kings, one * of whom 
created it into a bishop's see. Athelstan granted it 
the privilege of six mints for the coinage of money. 
It has been three times burned down, and about the 
year 860 was demolish'd by the Danes. Close by the 
west gate stands King Arthur's palace. Egbert was 
crown'd here, and afterwards Alfred, and Edward the 
Confessor. l*he unfortunate William Rufus made it 
a point of being crown'd here every Christmas, and 
Richard Coeur de Lion after his arrival from the 
Holy Wars and his long imprisonment, was a second 
time crown'd in the Castle. Henry V. held his parlia- 
ment here before he embark'd for France. 

Adjoining to the Chapel, and on the spot where 
the castle once stood, Sir Christopher Wren, by 
command of Charles the II. form'd a design for a 

^ Strathfieldsaye. 
^ King Kynegil, the lonvert of Birinus. 


1792 palace,^ in which he meant to entertain his whole 
court with various kinds of amusements, and though 
the plan was only in part carried into execution, 
the building is magnificent. The south side 216 feet 
long, the west 328, and notwithstanding it is a shell, 
it cost upwards of ;^2 5,000, The Grand Duke of 
Tuscany presented Charles II. with several marble 
pillars of exquisite workmanship, which were to have 
supported the roof of the grand staircase ; these 
George III. gave to the Duke of Bolton. A hand- 
some balustrade runs quite round the top, and the 
inside of the court is decorated with a portico ; had 
not Charles's death put an end to its completion, it 
would have been a palace worthy that gay and ex- 
pensive monarch. The only use it has been put to 
since is as a place of confinement for the French and 
Spanish prisoners during the late wars ; it is now 
caird the King s House. We walk'd for some time 
around its environs ; 'tis on an eminence pleasantly 
situated. We next went to the Cathedral, and after 
to the College, founded by William of Wykeham, 
May 26th, 1387,* for seventy scholars, the wooden 
trenchers were all laid and they going to supper, 
and we stayed while the grace was chanted. The 
Cathedral is a noble Gothic architecture, and gene- 
rally allow'd to be equal to the Abbey Church of 
St. Albans; the length 525 feet.^ Cromwell's army 
committed horrible outrages here, destroying all the 
beautiful carved work and painted glass, overturned 
the communion table, and burn'd the rails that sur- 

* On the plan of Versailles. For two years the works proceeded. In 
1 8 10 the completed portion was made into barracks. 

' The date of the first stone of the chapel laid, but school commenced 
in 1386. 

^ This is the largest English cathedral, 560 feet. 


rounded it. The west window^ escaped their depre- 1792 
dations, and the magnificent tomb of William of 
Wykeham was happily prevented from sharing the 
same fate. 

In the High Street is the market-cross,' 43 feet 
in height, some say erected in commemoration of 
the introduction of Christianity, some say as late as 
Henry VI. 

We left Winchester on Thursday morn. About 
five miles on the right is Hursley,* the seat of Sir 
William Heathcote, but so surrounded by venerable 
oaks we did not get a sight of the house. Soon 
after this, had our first view of the sea. On a very 
elevated part of Southampton Common is a summer- 
house of Mr. Fleming's,* from whence must be a 
very fine view. We got to Southampton early, dined 
and lay there one night. ... As we spent a fort- 
night there on our return, I shall say no more of it 
at present Friday morning. Sir Hyde Parker having 
recommended Captain Wassell to convey us to Cowes, 
we set off in his thirty-ton vessel, a most commodious 
one. The wheels were taken off our carriages, and, 
with the horses, put on board another vessel. We all 
expected to be affected by the sea, but were most 
happily disappointed, and after a most pleasant sail of 
two hours in a beautiful morning, were landed at West 
Cowes. In our voyage we saw several seats, first 
Dummer, that of Mr. Dance (who married the widow 
of Mr. Dummer) ; next that of Captain Parr ; third, 

^ Was collected from all remains in other windows after, but is 
undoubtedly old. 

- Of fifteenth-century work. 

^ Once the property of Richard Cromwell, ex-Protector. Here Keble 
was vicar, who wrote the " Christian Year." 

* Stoneham Park. 



1792 Governor Hornby s ; fourth, LuttrelFs Folly; fifth, 
Calshot Castle, and, as we approached Cowes, the 
castle of that name. We were vastly pleased with 
the civility and orderly behaviour of Captain Wassell 
and his seamen. We stayed only a short time at 
Cowes for some refreshments for ourselves and horses, 
and the wheels to be replaced for travelling. While 
this was performing, we walked round the castle down 
to the bathing-machines, &c. West Cowes seems 
to have many pretty cottage lodging-houses, a pretty 
view of the sea, and, very convenient for bathing, is 
become a fashionable place for the last two years, ^ 
but IVe heard not wholesome for invalids on account 
of its muddy shore. 

We set off for Newport intending to lay there, not 
being certain the house Sir Hyde Parker had taken 
for us in Upper Ryde was ready for our reception ; so 
when we got to the ** Bugle Inn," Mr. Powys and Mr. 
Cooper, while the dinner was getting ready, rode over 
and found everything in order for the next day. New- 
port is one of the pleasantest towns in the island, houses 
small, streets uniform, well-paved, and a remarkable 
neatness throughout the place, inhabitants remark- 
able for civility, all kinds of shops, and everything 
to be got there, a theatre, and two markets held every 
week, at which the farmers' daughters appear, we 
heard, in a high style of beauty and elegance. 

In our short journey from this place of about six 
miles are seen some delightful views of the sea. 
The oak woods one goes thro* are beautiful, the view 
from Wootton Bridge particularly striking when the 
tide is in. . . . We got to Ryde about one on Satur- 
day, and found our house (for we were too numerous 

* From this, Fashion marked it for her own in 1790 ! 


not to want a whole one), tolerable; the place indeed 1792 
may be said to consist merely of cottages, but all 
taken up with company, and more daily wishing to 
come ; indeed, *tis so charming a country, and from 
it the sea appears in its highest beauty, so that in 
a few years I make no doubt it will be a very fashion- 
able spot. . . . Neither so reasonable as now, as we 
had our little domain for two guineas a week,^ with 
eight bedrooms for ourselves and servants, tho* not 
very spacious, very neat, and comfortable. 

Sunday, July \st. — We went to the chapel at 
Ryde, service only once a day at half-past three. 
Mr. Gill, a very worthy man, curate there, and two 
more churches every Sunday. How we wished to 
procure him a good living ; but neither himself nor 
his large family ever repine at their situation in life. 
The singing very good, accompanied by several 
instruments. We had in the morning driven down 
to the beach, from which one sees many pretty 
houses ; a Mr. Windham's and Dr. Walker's, the 
latter supposed to be "Godolphins Cottage," by 
Mrs. Charles Smith in her novel of **Emiline"; no 
doubt a sweet spot, but not equal to that of Sir 
Archibald Macdonalds, the Attorney-General's, a 
most delightful place, with such a command of the 
sea. Dr. Walker, Admiral Hotham,^ Sir Hyde,* 
and Lady Parker all came that day, and the next 
we went to dine at Knighton, the seat of the 
latter about six miles from Ryde. Very near them 

^ The price of a single room in the season now ! 

' Sir William, eleventh Baronet and first Baron Hotham, created so 
for his naval services. 

' Sir Hyde, Admiral of the White, knighted for his services in 
American war, married Anne Palmer Boteler of Paradise House, 


1792 in the road is Ashley's Sea-mark,^ erected in George 
II. 's reign, 1735. We drove up the hill on which it 
stands. *Tis a triangular stone pyramid. Before us 
was the harbour of Brading, bounded by Bembridge 
to the right and St. Helens to the left ; the view 
from thence is grand beyond description ; the coast of 
Sussex bounded the distance before us. After this 
we soon reached Knighton House, ^ situated in a dale 
surrounded by woods, from the walks of which are 
views of the sea. The building, tho' very ancient, is 
not gloomy, and spacious and pleasing in the inside, 
tho' the windows are latticed and retain their antique 
pillars of stone. One part of this stone edifice is finely 
variegated by ivy binding its gable end ; on each side 
the house is a fine range of woods ; on one side of 
the hill is seen St. Catherine's, on the other the 
downs of St. Boniface. I took a sketch of the old 
mansion. We were so agreeably entertained with 
Knighton and its hospital owners, that we did not 
reach Ryde till very late. 

On the 4th we took a ride to see the Priory, 
Sir Nash Grose's, reckoned one of the most capital 
situations and sea views near Ryde. . . . We re- 
turned back a different way along the beach, as the 
tide was not up by Dr. Walker's and Sir Archibald s. 
The next day it rained. . . . The fleet lay at Spithead 
just opposite, only three miles distance. 

On Saturday, July 7th, we hired another thirty- 
ton vessel, whose captain kept the ** Bugle Inn," 
Lower Ryde, as civil a captain as our other, and 
still more reasonable, as he only ask'd half-a-guinea 
for the day ; he had been recommended by Sir Hyde, 

* Should be Ashe/s Sea-mark, 424 feet above sea. 
^ This beautiful old house was pulled down in 1820. 


who was gone on board the Duke, Lord Hood,^ 1792 
commander, having desired to go volunteer for a 
month's cruise with his Lordship. Seven sail of the 
line had, as I before mentioned, lain opposite to Ryde 
all the time we had been there, viz., the Duke, 
Brunswick, Bedford, Orion, Hannibal, Elfreda, and 
the Assistance, and we heard the news from India 
before most people in London, as we saw the vessel 
come in with despatches from Lord Cornwallis,^ 
and Sir Hyde Parker happened to be on board 
the Duke with Lord Hood at the time. But to 
return to Saturday, when our vessel arrived at the 
fleet, the Lords of the Admiralty were arrived from 
Portsmouth, and just going to survey each ship, to 
see if everything was in proper order before they 
set sail. Lord Chatham, &c., were on board a ten- 
oared barge, the men in the neatest uniform of white 
jackets and trousers, and the band of music playing. 
Each ship was to be manned, as 'tis termed, as their 
Lordships enter it, and so entertaining a ceremony I 
never before saw. On a drum beating, 300 men fly 
up with such agility, it quite amazes any one not 
conversant in sea affairs, and in a few moments are 
standing at the yards and ropes in the most exact 
order, without any of those fears the lookers-on 
cannot help feeling for them. In this manner their 
Lordships went from ship to ship, beginning with the 
Duke, and when the survey of each was over, the 
drum beat, the music play'd, and they boarded the 
ten-oar d barge, and the 300 sailors came down the 
ropes as quickly as they had ascended, and as the 

^ Admiral Hood, a famous British seaman, bom 1724, died 1816. 
' Then Governor-General in India, engaged in the war against 
Tippu Sultin. 


1792 barge approached the next ship their crew as instan- 
taneously mounted. We followed them to as many 
of the seven as we chose, but wishing to go on 
board the Duke before the above ceremony was 
concluded, as Lord Hood was to have a turtle- feast 
for the Lords of the Admiralty, we sail'd back to the 
Duke. Sir Hyde had been so obliging as to signify 
our intention to Captain Brown, who ordered their 
barge to come for us, and as we enter d the ship the 
music play*d, and we were received in the highest 
style of politeness, and ushered into Sir Hyde's 
elegant apartment ; but as he was dressing in an 
inner cabin for dinner, we insisted on not hindering 
him ; but Captain Brown took us all over the ship. 
'Tis a 98-gun man-of-war, and as it was many years 
since I had been on board one, I was nearly as much 
astonished as our young people and the servants, who 
had never seen one. . . . The upper deck a fine pro- 
menade of 160 feet in length, and the middle one 
airy and convenient, nor seem*d crowded tho' 6cx> 
sailors on board, and that morning there were sent 
off, as they were to sail so soon, 200 women and 
children. We were shown the chaplain's, secretary's, 
and doctor s apartments, with a fine medicine-chest 
in a closet adjoining. In one room fifteen midship- 
men were set down to a hot dinner ; in another store- 
room we were shown the bread and cheese cut, and 
weigh'd each day's sailor's allowance ; in another hung 
a quantity of beef; all these apartments were below 
water. Then we went upstairs in a pleasant long room 
rather low ceil'd, where some of the officers were just 
going to an early dinner, on account of the grand one 
between five and six. The day before their Lordships 
had another turtle, to which they did not get till past 


seven. The officers entreated us to partake of their 1792 
early dinner, which we declined, but had cakes and 
wine and water, as they seem'd quite hurt by a refusal, 
tho' we had a cold collation on board our vessel, and 
had ordered a late one at Ryde in the evening. . Hav- 
ing seen everything, we took leave of Sir Hyde and 
the polite officers, and with their band playing were 
conveyed back to our vessel in their barge. 

Sunday, — Went at usual hour to church. 

Monday. — Mr. Powys and I, Caroline, and Miss 
Cooper^ drove in two whiskys to Newport. Mr. 
Cooper* went airing by the sea in the chaise with 
the Doctor. I must not forget to mention how cheap 
fish were at Ryde. Sand-eels, the nicest little things 
I ever tasted, like whitebait, one day nine fine mackrel 
for IS., lobsters and crabs 4d. a lb., the best shrimps 
I ever tasted, and another day thirteen whiting-cole, 
superior to whitings, gd. — all, they told us, very dear, 
as the fleet being at Spithead made such a difference 
in the price of every article. 

Dr. Cooper had taken his own whisky, and we 
had hired one on purpose, as we thought the convey- 
ance so agreeable to what a close carriage would be ; 
but they were of no use in the island, as not wide 
enough for the ruts, and tho' the roads were certainly 
much better than I remember them formerly, they 
may still be call'd very indifferent. The inhabitants 
brag of their not having one turnpike, but if they had 
many, one should not mind paying for so great a con- 
venience. But there are whiskys to be hired at all the 
inns, made for the roads, and they let them out with 
a little boy as guide and gate-opener, as there are 
numbers of the latter (the former, very difficult to find) 

^ Daughter of Dr. Cooper. * Son of Dr. Cooper. 


1792 for 4d. a day. Their post-chaise boys all have a chair 
to sit in instead of a coach-box, and never ride the 

*A11 Tuesday morning we, with numerous other 
people, were waiting at the benches at the end of the 
village commanding the sea to see the fleet set sail. 
It was a pretty sight to see the flashes and hear the 
guns firing of each ship, but they did not set out till 
Wednesday. We passed the next morn with Mrs. 
Williams, an agreeable old lady, who resides with her 
son and daughter at a sweet cottage at Ryde ; the 
son, Captain Williams of the Royal Navy, a very 
agreeable young man, an intimate acquaintance of Sir 
Hyde's. Thursday we all paid a morning visit to 
Lady Parker, who we found very dull at his absence ; ^ 
but as we told her one month was so soon over, we 
would not let her give way to melancholy, and made 
a party for the Saturday morning to meet at Newport 
market, a very fashionable rendezvous, to see the 
farmers daughters, so much talked of for their beauty 
and neatness. When we got to that pretty town, 
it seem*d as if all the smarts of the island were as- 
sembled. The beauties afore mentioned came on 
horseback with their baskets. They have a room 
where they new dress, and we were told a hairdresser 
always attends. We found them arranged in great 
order in the market, appearing indeed very smart and 
neat, and many pretty girls, tho' the Beauty of the 
island was not there that day. There are very excel- 
lent shops of all kinds in Newport, and every fashion- 
able thing to be bought there. 

^ Her natural fears for his safety might well be increased by the fact 
that his father. Sir ;Hyde, fourth Baronet, after brilliant services in the 
West Indies, sailed from Rio Janeiro in 1782, and was never heard of 


Sunday. — Church at the usual time, and a large 1792 
party to tea, and a long walk in the evening. 

Tuesday. — Captain Williams went with us a long 
walk, to show us Binstead Parsonage and the ruins 
of Quarr Abbey. Binstead is about a mile and three- 
quarters from Ryde, through sweet woods, with often 
a sea view. The Reverend's residence is literally 
a cottage, but in the most romantic style possible, 
standing in a sweet garden commanding a view of 
the ocean, the thatched cottage surrounded by tall 
firs and other trees. Over the door and each window 
is the bust of some poet or great man, and under that 
which stands over the entrance is written in capi- 
tals, ** Contentment is wealth." Myrtles under every 
window growing wild. From thence is Quarr Abbey, ^ 
the ruin of an ancient monastery, a charming walk 
thro' a wood. 'Tis now only a farmhouse, but you 
see the walls of the old abbey, and here and there a 
ruined arch. 

Wednesday morning we went a longer excursion 
to Sandown Fort, about seven miles from Ryde, 
through the village of Brading, near which we passed 
a very good house of Sir William Oglander s,* situated 
in a beautiful vale. When we got to Sandown Fort,*** 
the roaring of the sea and dashing of the waves was 
more noble than we had yet seen. It seems it is the 
only place an enemy could land in the island. We 
got out of the carriages as the horses seem'd alarmed, 
and walk'd along the beach about half a mile to 
Sandown Cottage, a summer residence of the famous 

* Founded by Baldwin de Rcdvers, temp. Henry I., 1132, for 

- Nunwcll Park, seat of the Oglanders ever since the Conquest. 
^ Dates from Charles 1 1. 


1792 Mr. Wilkes/ commands an uncommon view of the 
sea and surrounding cliffs, very fine garden, in which 
is a menagerie. Strangers have leave to see the 
place by setting down their names in a book kept 
on purpose. The cottage itself has only a very 
few small rooms ; but as Mr. Wilkes often entertains 
many families, he has erected in the gardens many 
of the fashionable canvas ones, fitted up in different 
manners and of large dimensions. One call'd the 
'* Pavilion," another the ** Etruscan," a third a dress- 
ing-room of Miss Wilkes, others as bedrooms, all very 
elegantly furnished, and very clever for summer (and 
in the Isle of Wight, where it seems a robbery was 
never known), but to us who reside so much nearer 
to the vicinity of the Metropolis, the idea of being 
abroad in such open apartments strikes one with 
some rather small apprehensions. Some of the rooms 
contain very capital prints and very fine china, indeed 
altogether well worth seeing, tho* the country round 
it is not near so pleasing as near Ryde, tho' the sea 
more noble. 

Thursday, the 19th July, we set sail in our own 
vessel. Lady Parker and her party and our own, for 
Portsmouth, as we had been informed we must see 
the great annual fair kept there, which lasts three 
weeks. In about an hour and a half we got near 
Portsmouth. Had a view of the Navy Hospital, and 
Southsea Castle. We first sailed round and round 
all the ships lying there, as the Royal George, the 
Queen Charlotte, Princess Royal, and others. Cap- 
tain Williams being with us, showed us in each 
what was particularly worth our observation, and had 

> Who called it the " Villakin." Mr. John Wilkes bought it in 1788, 
and spent most of his time there till his death in 1797. 


before asked the favour of Sir Andrew Douglas, 1792 
captain of the Alcide, to send his ten-oar'd barge 
to land us at the docks ; and Lady Parker had sent 
her compliments to Mr. White, Master of the Works, 
to beg he would show her friends his department. 
He came to us immediately, and Tm sure took infinite 
trouble in explaining everything to us. The walls 
of the dockyard are at least two miles in circumfer- 
ence, and contain about eighty-three acres ^ of ground. 
About 3000 men are usually employed there, con- 
sisting of labourers of every kind. They were then 
beginning a new dock, about an acre of ground, and 
we saw some of the foundation-stones ramm'd down. 
But what most entertained me was the construction 
of a ship, which Mr. White was so obliging as to 
show me, in different parts of the yard, in every state 
from its very commencement to the finishing. In 
one just begun, we saw about thirty whole trees, 
which made the arch, after that on the outside are 
fastened planks the contrary way to what the trees 
go, which are done with wooden pegs, each two feet 
long (as no nails are used in a ship). From thence 
we went to the store boat-house, 160 feet in length. 
It contained about three hundred boats of different sorts 
and sizes, as many slung up to the ceiling as were on 
the floor. After we had gone over all the works, too 
numerous to mention, Mr. White insisted on our going 
to his house after our fatigue, where we were politely 
entertained with cake and sandwiches, and the gentle- 
men all said the very finest old hock they ever tasted. 
His house seems a very good one, and many good 
pictures. All the buildings in the dockyard seem as 

* It contains more than 120 acres now. 


1792 if quite new built,^ and have a handsome appearance. 
From Mr. White s we had another long walk to the 
fair. The booths were placed regularly down the 
middle of a very long street. Each indeed might be 
styl'd a smart shop, furnished with every kind of arti- 
cle that could be wanted ; shop-bills given at each 
to ascertain that they sold the very best assortment 
of everything in the newest taste from London ; but 
the smart shopmen might have added, *' and every 
article much dearer than you could have purchased 
them in the Metropolis." But I dare say every lady, 
as well as those of our party, had a " fairing " presented 
them, and then the extravagance of the price was 
not thought of. It was just then the fashionable rage 
for Barcelona handkerchiefs, and such numbers were 
sold it quite amazed one. We dined at **The Crown." 
had an elegant dinner, very badly dress'd, at as dirty 
an inn as I was ever at. After coffee we took another 
promenade through the fair to get some trifles all of 
us seem'd to have forgot. Then drank tea, and set 
off in our vessel for Ryde, with wind and tide both 
against us. But as it was a delightful still evening, 
and all fond of the sea, we had no fears, nor got any 
colds, tho' not at home till past ten, too late for Lady 
Parker to go to Knighton ; so some of their party 
slept at Captain Williams', and some at the inn. . . . 

On Friday, July 20th, Mr. Cooper, and Mr. Powys 
went to Southampton to take lodgings, and returned 
in the evening, having succeeded, and informed us 
quite in the ^en^ee/ peLVt of the town, being above Bar. 
On Monday we left the island with regret. Captain 
Williams had asked Sir Andrew Douglas to let Dr. 

^ It had been burnt down three times, viz., in 1760 from lightning, in 
1770, and in 1776 from an incendiary. 


Cooper have his man-of-war barge to take him over, 1792 
as going in much less time than our large vessel. We 
were becalm'd, and exactly five hours on board, but 
being fond of the sea and a fine day, we were not 
tired of our long voyage, but we afterwards heard they 
were thirteen hours going back; that indeed would 
have been rather too long for even the gentlemen's 
patience to have held out ; what would have become 
of the ladies* fortitude I know not. We got to our 
lodgings by dinner-time, and met Mr. and Mrs. Home 
of Bevis Mount, who desired us to come and break- 
fast with them the next morning. . . . *Tis only a 
mile from the town. A most elegant breakfast waited 
our arrival. I was rather disappointed in the house 
and grounds. The house Mr. Home is greatly im- 
proving, but they own the Leasowes, (Mr. Shen- 
stone s), which they had just sold when they purchased 
Bevis Mount, was far the prettiest spot. 

Wednesday it rain'd the whole day. Thursday 
we caird on Lord and Lady Macclesfield,^ whose family 
came to Southampton the day after us, and after our 
visit to them we drove in our whiskys to see Netley 
Abbey, rather preferring a drive round Southampton 
Ride than crossing at Itchen Ferry. Tis a pleasant 
round, and one passes many sweet houses. The first, 
Belle Vue, a fine prospect . . . now the residence of Sir 
Richard King. The next, Bevis Hill, General Hib- 
bert s, &c. In a vale farther on, about three miles from 
Southampton, is Hans Sloane's,^ Esq., a good brick 
house. . . . Netley Abbey is, without exception, one 
of the first objects of its kind in Great Britain. It at 
present belongs to a Mr. Dance, who married the widow 
of Mr. Dummer, his predecessor, who enclosed the 

^ Home neighbours at Shirburn Castle, Oxon. ' Paultons. 


1792 venerable ruins with a wall. The beautiful woods 
surrounding it, and prospect from it, command the 
stranger's attention in a peculiar mariner, and the 
venerable pile is really one of the most picturesque 
objects I ever saw. The architecture is grand, and 
the east window of the church must have been 
uncommonly fine. A small part of the beautiful ceil- 
ing still remains, and a spiral stone staircase that 
went to the gallery is not yet fallen in. . . . Godwin 
and Leland say that it was founded by Peter de 
Rupibus, who died 1238, but Tanner attributes it to 
Henry III., who, a.d. 1239, founded an abbey of 
Cistercian monks, with whom Dugdale agrees. The 
chapel is in form of a cross ; some remains of a refec- 
tory and kitchen appear. The whole is so overgrown 
with ivy as to inspire the most pleasing melancholy. 
The present vulgar opinion of what is calFd the 
Abbots Kitchen is deemed a subterranean passage 
leading to the castle. 

Saturday, 28///. — We drove in the whisky to see 
Broadlands, the seat of Lord Palmerston ; they were 
then gone abroad, which we were sorry for, being 
acquainted with the family ; besides, we could not but 
be anxious as the troubles had commenced in France,^ 
and they had taken their four children with them. 
. . . The house is undoubtedly good, but not grand. 
The entrance gives one the best idea, as you ascend a 
pleasing portico ; but the inside, from the Italian taste, 
strikes me with gloominess, as the height of all the 
windows is dreadful, and one may judge must be 
uncomfortably so, as Lady Palmerston has a settee on 
wheels, which is placed on two or three steps ; and on 
inquiring from the housekeeper what that was for, she 

* This was the year of the National Convention. 


replied that her Ladyship might see out of the windows. 1 792 
There is a desk on it to read, write, or draw upon, so 
that the machine is clever, only nowadays, when all 
windows are down to the ground, one should be more 
averse to ascend to have a prospect. The hall is 
adorn'd with very fine statues, and the collection of 
pictures all over the house very capital. . . . 

Monday, 2f>th. — We set out to see a part of the 
Isle of Wight we had not before, and went to Lyming- 
ton early in the morning. The first village we passed 
was Milbrook, next by the village of Redbridge, which 
bridge (as they were building a new stone one), was 
rather a tremendous road, but we got safe over it. . . . 
Soon after you are through the village and that of 
Totton you reach the New Forest, and see your 
straight road for many miles, which to me is ever a 
disagreeable view ; but the beauty of that forest in 
some measure makes amends, as the trees are so 
noble, and many grand clumps, through which, in the 
most picturesque manner, one sees other woody lanes, 
uncommon, and therefore very striking to the eye. 
This forest, we were told, is at least forty miles in 
circumference. Lyndhurst, a pleasant village, and 
much frequented in the summer season, is ten miles 
from Southampton, situated in the heart of the forest, 
on the declivity of a hill. It once boasted of a monarch 
for its inhabitant. The King's House ^ indeed, as a 
royal one, makes an indifferent appearance ; 'tis now 
the Duke of Gloucester's, who is Ranger. It com- 
mands a fine view of the Southampton river and the 
sea. On the left, soon after you leave the town, 
is Foxlease, the seat of Sir Philip Jennings Clerk 

^ The official residence of the Ranger, and where the Forest Courts 
are held. 


1792 (Lady Jennings now lets it); Burleigh Lodge and 
Cufifnels, now George Rose's, Esq., secretary to the 
Chancellor of the Exchequer. The seat of the 
Compton Willis's merits the notice of people of taste. 
Proceeding thro' Brockenhurst, three miles from 
Lyndhurst is the seat of Edward Morant, Esq., a 
very fine house.^ In about another five miles, in 
which is an uninterrupted view of the Isle of Wight, 
we got to Lymington, a small neat seaport, eighteen 
miles from Southampton. It is pleasantly situated on 
an eminence, from which the island is but a short 
passage by sea, not far from the celebrated rocks 
called the Needles. Near this place are said to be 
the most famous saltworks in the kingdom. The 
quay is spacious. Ships of considerable burthen sail 
from this place. Hurst Castle is nearly opposite this 
town. We stayed at Lymington no longer than to 
have some sandwiches ; and leaving our carriages, as 
we imagined we could hire some vehicle at Yarmouth, 
we took a vessel, which conveyed us the seven miles 
in about an hour and a half. When we landed at 
Yarmouth, to our sorrow, we were inform'd the only 
post-chaise was gone with another party, and as we 
were determin'd not to lose the fine view of Fresh- 
water, we had no alternative but to walk part of the 
way, first taking a boat, which in about an hour row'd 
us to the church, where we landed, and had then about 
two miles to walk to the cliff, and when we arrived 
the view fully answer'd our fatigue. There we rested 
on a bench, where the waves dash'd just up to us. 
We then mounted the cliffs, and came on Afton 
Down, which commands a most noble view of the 
sea, something like that at Mr. Wilkes', but, the cliff 

* Brockenhurst Park. 


being higher and more broken, renders this more 1792 
sublimely beautiful. The fine white sand, the vein 
of which runs (as the miners informed us), entirely 
through from the extremity of the point opposite 
Yarmouth to the downs of Afton. It belongs to a 
Mr. Urry of Yarmouth ; the profit very great indeed. 
Vessels lie in Alum Bay to load with it, being the 
only sort in these kingdoms fit for making the white 
glass, and *tis likewise used for the china manufacture 
at Worcester ; nor will any other do for these uses. 
We walked back to Yarmouth, got there about eight 
in the evening, and were not sorry to find our dinner 
ready at a very small neat inn ( " The Angel ").... 
About nine the next morning we got into our vessel 
and arrived at Lymington ; there we breakfasted, and 
set off in our whiskys for Southampton. Southampton 
is one of the most neat and pleasant towns I ever saw, 
twelve miles from Winchester ; was once wall'd round, 
many large stones of which are still remaining. There 
were four gates, only three now. It consists chiefly 
of one long fine street of three-quarters of a mile in 
length, called the High Street, and in Leland's time 
was supposed to be the finest street of any town in 
England. The Polygon (not far distant), could the 
original plan been completed, 'tis said, would have 
been one of the first places in the kingdom, perhaps 
in the world, regarded in the view of modern archi- 
tecture. At the extremity a capital building was 
erected, with two detached wings and colonnades. The 
centre was an elegant tavern, with assembly, card- 
rooms, &c., &c., and at each wing hotels to accommo- 
date the nobility and gentry. The tavern is taken 
down, but the wings converted into genteel houses. 

On the 3rd August 1792 the first stone of the new 



1792 church, called All Saints, was laid. We saw it from 
a stand erected in the High Street just opposite, and 
the windows of every house were filled with company 
to see the procession of mayor and aldermen, attended 
to and from the other church ^ by a vast concourse of 
people. A very fine sermon was there preach'd by 
Mr. Scott, and an anthem sung. When divine ser- 
vice was over, about half- past one, they all proceeded 
to the spot where the inscription, on a glass plate, was 
read with an audible voice by the town-clerk, signi- 
fying "that the first stone of All Saints Church was 
laid on the 3rd of August 1792 by Mr. Donellen, 
Grand Freemason" (this gentleman is son to George I L, 
and very like the present royal family). They called 
for silence when he read it, and it was then placed by 
him between two stones, and let down by puUies ; 
then a prayer was said by Mr. Scott, and the most pro- 
found silence was preserved till the amen was resounded 
by the multitude ; then three times three, after which 
the celebrated Mr. Bird sang '* Rule Britannia ; " and, 
after he had done, three times three again, when all 
dispersed, and the gentlemen retired to a grand enter- 

Our time at Southampton was indeed spent plea- 
santly. . . . Lady Hyde Parker and Captain Williams 
breakfasted with us the morning we set out, August 
7th. We stopped at Winchester, and lay that night 
at a most excellent inn at Popham Lane. The next 
day set off about twelve, passed Kempshot, the Prince 
of Wales' hunting-box ; nothing remarkably pleasing 
in the view of it ; stopped at a neat little inn on Heck- 
field Heath, just by Lord Rivers' park, and got about 

* St. Lawrence. 


five to dinner at Dr. Coopers at Sonning;^ lay there 1792 
that night, and got home to Fawley to dinner on 
August 9th, after a most pleasant tour, which we 
should all have enjoyed in a much greater degree had 
we not visibly seen poor Dr. Cooper's health daily 
declining, though the journey seem'd to have been of 
service as often as we changed the air ; but at last we 
thought him too far gone to be at any great distance 
from home, and entreated him to return, which he always 
seem'd unwilling to do, perhaps thinking it might be 
less anxiety to his children if he had died at any other 
place, as never were father and children more fond or 
attentive to each others happiness. 

August i^th. — We went to stay at Hardwick. 
On 1 5th had a very pleasant day upon the water ; 
went in a large boat, and dined at Goring Spring,* 
formerly famous for its water. It belongs to Mr. 

At4gust 2jth. — Died at his living at Sonning, the 
Rev. Dr. Cooper* very much regretted by all his 

August 2%th. — The Reading races. The middle 
night we were at the play, *' The Child of Nature," 
and "No Song no Supper." We had been at the 
races the first day, and were set off for the course on 

' Dr. Cooper was vicar of Sonning, Berks, and rector of Wbaddon, 
near Bath. 

* Goring Spring, now little used, was reckoned good for ulcers, sore 
eyes, scorbutic affections. Mr. Richard Lybbe, hearing complaints of 
water being sold, not from the spring, ordered every vessel to be filled 
and sealed with his arms, certain people to supply it, and limited the 
charge to id. a quart for attendance and sealing. Reading M ercury oi 
February 13th, 1724, gives a long list of persons cured. 

' Edward Cooper, son of Gislingham Cooper and his wife, Anne 
Whitelock, joined his mother in selling Phyllis Court and Henley Manor 
to Sambrook Freeman in 1768. His portrait represents a rosy, round- 
faced divine, with a most amiable expression. 


1792 this too, but unfortunately were overturned, or I may 
say fortunately, as neither my poor mother, Caroline, 
or myself were the least hurt. Caroline and I at first 
thought of not attending the theatre after this accident, 
but in the space of an hour or two we had so many 
inquiries, and report, as is generally the case, had 
made us all suffer such a number of misfortunes, 
that we determined to show ourselves alive and well ; 
so had the glasses of our coach mended, and enter'd 
the playhouse, to the infinite surprise of all our ac- 
quaintances, and received such numerous congratula- 
tions as were quite flattering. 

September 28///. — Our first winter, Henley ball. 

November i^th. — Died Sir Sidney Meadows,^ aged 
92. Had rode that day in his riding-house. We 
went into mourning for him Sunday 25th. 

December nth, — Miss Cooper married to Captain 
Williams,^ of the Navy. They set off for his house in 
the Isle of Wight. 

December 2%tk. — Last Henley ball for the season. 

1793 January ist, 1793. — We went to Hardwick for 
some days. 

March i^tk was the day our dear Caroline was 
married to Mr. Cooper, son of the late Dr. Cooper, of 
Sonning, Berks, a match that gave all her friends the 
highest satisfaction, as there cannot be a more worthy 
young man. We had all intended to have had the 
ceremony performed in London, but found some diffi- 
culties about residence, parish, &c., so determin'd to 
have it at Fawley ; so sent to our son Thomas not to 
come up, but meet us there, with Phil and Louisa. I 
was so affected with the loss of my dear girl (who till 

* Mr. Powys's grandmother was a daughter of Sir Philip Meadows. 

• Vide Isle of Wight Tour, same year. 


latterly I had never parted with for even one night), i793 
that I dreaded how I should behave at the time. 
They all persuaded me not to go with her; so her 
father, Mr. Cooper, and herself went to Fawley the 
day before, and the ceremony was over before any 
but our own family knew that it was to be performed 
there. And Tom, who had been all the week before 
in parties in our large neighbourhood, was afterwards 
complimented at keeping a secret even better than a 
lady ! As soon as it was over, Mr. Powys and Tom 
set off for London, and Phil and Louisa for Hard wick, 
the bride and bridegroom for Sonning. 

September iStA. — To stay at Hardwick, and 26th 
at Wasing Place. 

October 25/A. — Paid a visit at Mr. Grote's,^ to the 
bride, Mrs. George Grote. Dear little Henry was 
inoculated ^ at Hardwick by Mr. Coulson of Henley, 
and had the small-pox as favourably as possible. 

October iWi and November i^th. — Two Henley 
balls ; another December 20th, very full, and ended the 
year with great ^clat. 

Here ends my sort of journal for the year 1793 ; for 
though in my annual pocket-book I always set down 
the visits of each day, yet here it would take up too 
much room ; for in so excellent and agreeable a neigh- 
bourhood it would be a constant repetition of dinners 
at each mansion within seven or eight miles round. 

This was a very mild winter, no snow till February 1794 
28th, and that soon went off. 

Will Heath, our gardener George's son, kill'd by 
a bull at Fawley Court. 

^ Badgemore, Oxon. Mrs. G. Grote, a remarkably clever woman, 
wife of the historian, and wrote his Memoirs. 

' Introduced into England by Lady Mary Wortlcy Montagu in 172 1. 


1794 March 12th. — Mr. Powys and I went to Bath. 

March 25M. — Went to Bristol ; dined at the Dean's, 

On 27th went to see Miss Wallace in "The Child 
of Nature." She left Bath soon after for the London 

April 2^h. — My brother went to London to Lord 
Bayham's, on the death of Lord Camden.^ 

July 2yd. — My mother went to her house at 

August 25M. — Mr. Powys and myself went to 
Mrs. Micklem's, at Reading, for the races. Lords 
Radnor, and Craven, stewards. Races tolerable, the 
second ball very good. Four brides, all pretty women, 
Mrs. Chute of the Vine, Mrs. Derby, Mrs. Stevens, 
and Mrs. . Mr. Annesley, of Blechingdon, 

had a horse run the first day, and won ; another the 
second, and that won. The play acted, as usual, the 
middle night. On the 29th, the day after the races, 
Mr. Dundas, chosen Member for the county in room 
of Mr. Hartley, made the town very gay. A great 
procession about one o'clock thro' every street. Mr 
Dundas, accompanied by many gentlemen on horse- 
back and six or seven carriages followed with the free- 
holders of Berks. 

September 2nd, — I rode my poor black horse for 
the last time ; soon after he went blind, and seem'd so 
uncomfortable to himself, that we thought it were 
charitable to put him out of his misery, tho' I believe 
all the family joined with me in tears on this occasion. 

October 27. — Our dear Caroline* brought to bed of 
a son. 

December j^rd. — Edward Philip Cooper was chris- 

^ Lord Camden died April 18, 1794. 
* Her daughter, Mrs. Cooper. 


tened at Harpsden Church.^ My mother, Mr. Powys, i794 
Mrs. Williams, and Mr. Henry Austen, sponsors. He 
had been half-christened before. 

December ijtk. — The severe frost began. 

December 2 5 /A, Christmas Day. — It begun to snow 
early, and lay very deep. N.B. — The weather was 
so bad from the 17th that we never could use the 
horses for seven weeks. 

On the 9th January they dined at Henley Park, 1795 
obliged to walk there, accompanied by the maid with 
bundles of clothes, as horses could not be used from 
snow and ice. Mrs. Powys stayed two nights, and 
says, •* In the evenings we play'd many pools at quad- 
rille: that old game was now become fashionable. 
Had to walk back in the style we came." 

January 24/^. — The coldest day that has been 
known for years ; the glass down to 8. 

January 26th. — Snow'd harder than at all, had 
never been off the ground, but thawed by the sun in 
the daytime, and always froze hard in the night. 

February 2nd. — The gentlemen had to walk to 
their club at Henley. The intense cold all January 
was hardly bearable. I could do nothing but read, 
was forced to keep warm gloves on, and never quitted 
the fireside when indoors, tho* made it a rule to walk 
every day when the snow was not falling. People 
were sadly alarm'd about firing, as the coals at Read- 
ing and Henley were just gone, and vessels^ could 
not get up with more. We thought ourselves particu- 
larly fortunate that our London stock lasted till the 
last week, when we got half a sack from Henley, of 

^ Mr. Cooper, then in holy orders, was curate at Harpsden for the 
Rev. Thomas Leigh, rector, who was non-resident. 
'This shows the coals were conveyed in barges. 


1795 such terrible sweepings up that they were really of 
little use, and no wood to be got. 

On the 8th February the thaw began ; on the 9th 
a fog and rain, most of the snow gone, but the ice 
very thick, and such floods all round Henley, even at 
Fawley, which on such a hill appear d quite a pheno- 
menon ; but the ponds being full of ice, and the ground 
so hard that rain could not penetrate either, the water 
ran down the yard and avenue in torrents. On the i ith, 
managed to drive to Harpsden to see my Caroline, as 
we had never met since the 23rd December. On the 
1 2th, Phil, Louisa, and Henry came to Fawley, as we 
had not seen them for the same length of time, but, 
at the distance of Hardwick, was less surprising ; but 
the weather had not done with us, for at eleven that 
night it began again to snow. 

On the 18th, the hardest frost, and the coldest 
night, we have had at all. The three following days 
It snowed all day. 

February 25/^, the Fast. — M"y brother being in 
residence at Bristol, our son, Mr. Cooper, preach 'd. 
The frost had lasted eleven weeks on the fast-day. 

March ist. — Snow as deep on the ground as ever. 

March 13M. — Snow not all gone ; had been on the 
ground thirteen weeks. 

March 2\th, — Went to Hardwick ; fine weather. 

April i^th. — Mr. Powys and myself went to 
London. Much ill-health after the severe weather. 
London and Bath worse than the country. 

April i6th. — In the morning went to Mrs. 
Dawson's, the famous milliner in Pall Mall, to see 
the new Princess of Wales ^ go for the first time to 

* The unfortunate Caroline of Brunswick, who had been married to 
the Prince of Wales on April 8, 1795. 


the drawing-room in her new state coach. The 1795 
crowd, as one might suppose, was immense ; no car- 
riages allowed to go up or down Pall Mall ; but as 
it was a fine day, the companies'who could not get 
into the houses walked for some hours up and down, 
and when the Prince's carriages came, made a lane 
for them to pass. It certainly was a fine sight, tho' 
almost too gaudy to be pleasing. On Saturday, we 
being out in the carriages, were stopped by another 
procession of eighteen carriages, the Lord Mayor 
and Sheriffs going with the address on the Prince s 

April 2ydy First day of Term. — The Lord Chan- 
cellor and Judges, attended by forty carriages, went 
by Mr. Shrimpton's.^ 

April 2gth. — We went to see the panorama views * 
of the cities of London and Bath. The latter so very 
pleasing and exact, altogether a most wonderful per- 

April 2pth. — At the play of ** The Country Girl.'* 
Mrs. Jordan excellent as usual. 

May ^th, — At the play ** Wheel of Fortune." 

May gth. — At the exhibition of pictures of Lord 
Howe's^ victory. Vastly well worth seeing; and 
another, an exhibition of the House of Commons, in 
a large picture on one side of the room, all the por- 
traits in that painted in a large size ; and hung up 
on the other side the same apartment, the likenesses 
of all the gentlemen I know, so exact they must give 

^ Where they were staying ; Mr. Shrimpton had married their friend 
Miss Ewer. 

- At the Colosseum, Regent's Park. 

^ On 1st June 1794 against the French off Ushant 


1 795 The loth May, the weather again very cold; 
fires begun again. The last day of our stay in town 
with our kind friends. . . . London life now is every 
evening from card-party to card-party, where the heat 
of the room is hardly bearable, which, with the terrible 
late hours of the present time, makes one not the 
least wonder that most people are complaining of bad 

Mr. Powys and myself returned to Fawley, I can- 
not say (tho* in the country), to still life, for except in 
the most important point of late hours, our most agree- 
able and sociable neighbourhood never suffer their 
friends to pass a day solo. 

Ju7ie gth. — At the course at Ascot Races. The 
Royal family there, but being but indifferent weather, 
did not get out of their carriages. 

June I ith, Thursday. — Again at the races, and 
being a fine day, all the Royal family there. They 
first drove about in their coaches ; the Princess Royal 
in a very low phaeton and six Shetland ponies. The 
Princess of Wales got out of her coach, and went into 
a sort of summer-house built for the family. We saw 
her kneel down and kiss the Queen. After that every- 
body had a near view of her Highness, as the Queen 
and about sixteen of them came down and walk'd 
with the King, Prince, &c., for two hours within the 
railing. The company whose carriages were not near 
enough, got out and leant on the railing, and immense 
was the crowd ; but the Royal family walked round 
and round in a group, that every one might see their 
new Princess, who seem'd very lively, beautiful com- 
plexion, fine hair, and altogether a pretty little figure, 
tho' not handsome ; dressed (perhaps on purpose), 
rather particular, as the other fifteen ladies were in 


the dress of the times, all clear muslins; so had her 1795 
Highness, but under it a pink petticoat, which look'd 
remarkable. She had a purple sash and hat, and a 
black lace cloak. There was a cover d tent within 
these rails, where the Royal family all dined, and then 
walk'd about again. The King without his hat, 
looking so happy and good-humour d. Before they 
went away they all drove about in their carriages 
again, and left the numerous spectators all expressing 
their satisfaction at the day's diversions, as there had 
been besides very great sport on the turf. 

June i^th. — Poor Mrs. West^ died at Rose Hill, 
to the great grief of all who knew her. 'Twas a sad 
task upon us to break the event to our Louisa, her 
sister (Mrs. P. Lybbe Powys, junior), who was then 
very near lying-in. Mrs. West was buried on Wed- 
nesday 17th, at Walgrave Church, by my brother 
Powys, who half-christened the child, who was vastly 
well, and a lovely baby. 

June 21 St. — The longest day; had fires from the 
morning, which was a very white frost ! 

Went to Mrs. Scott's in the morning (Danesfield) ; 
met Lady Skinner and Mrs. Law, who had walk'd 
from Culham Court* We all went to see Medmen- 
ham Abbey, formerly a famous spot much frequented 
by Lord Le Despencer, Wilkes, &c. 

June 26th. — A vast deal of rain, and so cold we 
still had fires ! 

July T^rd. — Louisa Powys brought to bed of a girl 
(Caroline Louisa), at Hardwick House at three in the 

^ We Charlotte Michell. 

' Culham Court was then let to Mr. and Mrs. Law. Rose Hill was 
built by General Hart in Chinese style ; had spiral turrets, bells, and 


179s On Thursday, 9th July, to the infinite regret of 
cjvery one who knew him, died at Park Place, Marshal 
Conway,^ one of the most worthy of men. My brother 
and Mr. Powys had that morning walk'd with him 
over his delightful grounds, yet one cannot say we 
were surpris d at so sudden a seizure at his age, and 
with his complaints. It was what we had long been 
apprehensive of; and that they might not live to 
enjoy the alterations they were making, which were 
now nearly completed, having made the house equal 
to the spot it stands upon. . . . Whoever are the next 
possessors of it, the present inhabitants of the country 
must ever remember the kindness and affability of the 
Marshal and Lady Ailesbury. 

Jtily iT^th. — My brother Powys set out for Ireland 
on a visit to Lord Camden. He was appointed first 
chaplain to the Lord Lieutenant on his going there. 
Soon after my Lord wrote him word the bishopric of 
Killala was vacant and at his service, worth about 
;^3000 a year. My brother sent my Lord word, tho' 
he must ever feel infinitely obliged by his kind inten- 
tion, yet at his time of life, to leave family, friends, 
and country were three things to give up that more 
than balanced the three thousand a year. 

July 2gth. — We had a water-party with the Free- 
mans of Fawley Court, who have a delightful boat, 
with awning, and every convenience of curtains, &c., 
to secure one from bad weather. We set off for 
Clifden Spring. Took up Mr. and Mrs. Law from 

* Conway's picture, by Sir Joshua Reynolds, represents him as a good 
figure, a high, slightly retreating forehead, dark eyes, aquiline nose, well- 
formed mouth and chin, and amiable expression. Conway had a slight 
paralytic stroke in July 1776, but he died of cramp in the stomach, 
brought on by over-fatigue, and exposure to weather. 


Culham Court. It was too cold to dine as usual on i795 
the turf, so got out and walked while everything in 
the boat was got ready for dinner. 

We had all a curiosity to see the ruins of the once 
magnificent Clifden House, so we set off, and mounted 
a very steep hill ; the whole fabric, except one wing, 
a scene of ruin — the flight of stone steps all fallen in 
pieces ; but what seem'd the most unaccountable was, 
that the hall, which had fell in, and was a mass of 
stone pillars and bricks all in pieces, but two deal 
folding-doors not the least hurt, looking as if just 
fresh painted ! They were the entrance into the inner 
hall ; an archway over them had fallen in. Poor 
Lady Orkney^ was then residing in the remaining 
wing. It seems she was much affected by a will that 
was deposited in a place where the flames were too 
fierce for anyone to venture, tho' she tried herself, and 
a man offer d to venture too. The contents were not 
known, as it was not to be opened till her second son 
came of age. The fire at Clifden was on May 20th. We 
din'd at Mrs. Freeman's at Henley Park that night, 
and about 9.30 the servants came and told us Windsor 
Castle was on fire. On returning to Fawley Rectory, 
we saw the roof fall in — a tremendous sight ; but on 
reaching the rectory, from my dressing-room window 
I saw it could not be Windsor Castle. The fire was 
caused by the carelessness of a servant turning down 
a bed. Very few articles of value were saved. The 
loss is estimated at ;^50,ooo. 

Augtist ^th. — Went to Mr. Fane s at Wormsley, 
to pay them and the Dowager Lady Macclesfield ^ a 

* Mary, third Countess of Orkney, daughter of the Countess of 
Orkney, and Murrough, first Marquis of Thomond. 

* Mary, widow of third Earl Macclesfield. 


1795 visit. Her Ladyship went next day to her house at 
Shirburn Woods. 

AugTist 22,rd. — Fawley Church opened after being 

August 2^tk. — My brother retum'd that day from 
Ireland, very much entertained by his visits to the 
Lord Lietunant/ and admiring many parts of that 
country, tho' not regretting having refused being a 
bishop there. He told us 'tis amazing the style of 
living at the Castle, Dublin, and Phoenix Park. His 
King thercy he said, lived with infinitely more state 
than his King in England! Lord Camden sent Caro- 
line and me each an Irish stuff.* 

August 28M. — A fishing-party with the Coopers. 
Took a cold dinner to Mr. Freeman's island. I 
caught two dozen and three. 

September 2nd. — Had our annual buck from Blen- 

September <^th. — Fishing-party and cold dinner at 
Medmenham Abbey. 

September i^th. — To Hardwick. 

September i6th. — Phil's little daughter christened 
at Whitchurch by the name of Caroline Louisa — Mr. 
West, Caroline, and myself godparents. 

September 22nd. — A fishing-party with the Laws, 
Culham Court. The Goldings with them ; caught 
thirty-two dozen gudgeon. I caught six dozen and 
four that day. 

November 26M. — Another fishing-party with the 
Fawley Court family, &c. We had a very elegant 
dinner at their island. 

November 2()th. — Our dear Caroline* brought to 
bed of a daughter, Isabella Mary. 

^ His old pupil, first Marquis Camden. ' Poplins. 

' Mrs. Cooper, of Harpsden Rectory. 


December \^th. — Mr. Powys and myself dined at 1795 
Park Place/ Lady Ailesbury insisted on our going. 
It was a visit we much wished to avoid, as her 
Ladyship was going to quit that sweet place for ever 
the next day but one, and, of course, everything 
bore so melancholy an appearance that it was hardly 
possible to keep up one's spirits on the thoughts of 
losing so kind a neighbour. Mrs. S. Hervey, Mrs. 
Jennings,* &c., were there. 

January \st, 1796. — At the christening of Isabella 1796 
Mary (Cooper), at Harpsden, myself and Mrs. Leigh 
godmothers, Dr. Powys godfather. Stayed to dinner 
and supper; not home till two in the morning. 
Weather very different from last year; quite mild, 
had no frosts, but high winds and rain. 

I paid my first visit to Mrs. Atkyns,* Crouchley 

January jth. — The Princess of Wales brought to 
bed of a daughter.* N.B. — On my birthday ! 

February \%th. — The Gentlemen's Club at March's, 
** Red Lion," (Henley-on-Thames). 

February 22nd. — The same. Louisa and I dined 
with the Coopers, who were returned from the Isle 
of Wight, and who were fortunate to see Captain 
Williams, who came to refit his ship, and was de- 
taind a whole month for want of an east wind. 

Thursday^ February 2^th. — Mr. Powys and myself 
to Bath. Mr. P. s health had long wanted the waters, 

> Amongst other gifts Lady Ailesbury gave Mrs. Powys when leaving 
Park Place, were fourteen quires of paper containing plants, sea-weeds, 
roses, &C., she had collected. 

* Of Shiplake Court. 

' Crowsley Park, Oxon. Mr. Atkyns was heir to his aunt, Mrs. 
Wright, and after her death assumed the name of Atkyns Wright. 

* Princess Charlotte. 


1796 but I was too ill to go sooner. Lay that night at 
Mrs. Micklem s, Reading. Set off next morning at 
7.30 A.M.; got to the ** White Lion," Bath, by six. 
Next morning into lodgings, No. 9 George Street. 

March gth. — Had the pleasure of hearing Dr. 
Randolph preach, and on fast-day my brother, Mr. 
Powys, came from Bristol to preach at the Octagon, 
whose sermon was so generally admir'd, he was much 
desir'd to print it. I had the pleasure of seeing 
Mr. Powys' health mend daily, my own was very 
indifferent the whole time I was there. Only went 
to two plays and one dress-ball, but card-parties im- 
possible to escape, both at Bath and London. One 
evening was much entertained by Breslaus,^ whom 
we had not seen for years. At one time he made 
five or six of us think of the same card, desired from 
different gentlemen each to take a piece of money 
from their own pockets, mark them as they liked, 
lay each down on the table under a card. He never 
came near the table, but in a few minutes desired 
them to look for their own pieces under some lids 
of boxes on another table, and see if their marks 
were what they made. Wonderful how he could de- 
ceive one. The elegant new pump-room is finish'd 
since we were last at Bath, which renders the crowd 
in meeting there, much more commodious than it 
used to be. 

April ^th. — Left Bath for home. 

April 14/^— Dined at Wests, Rose Hill. The 
christening of his little girl. 

June 2isl. — We dined at Mrs. Winford's, Thames 
Bank, and went before dinner to see Mr. Williams' 
new house, called Temple,^ near Marlow. It's certainly 

* A conjurer. * The seat of General Owen P. Williams. 


a very good one, but fitted up and furnish'd in so 1796 
odd and superb a style, that one cannot help fancy- 
ing oneself in one of those palaces mentioned in the 
Arabian Nights' Entertainments ; but what surprised 
us, there is not a picture, but that of Mr. Williams 
himself. Statues of every kind, and at the farther 
end of a most magnificent greenhouse is an aviary 
full of all kinds of birds, flying loose in a large octagon 
of gilt wire, in which is a fountain in the centre, and 
in the evening 'tis illuminated by wax-lights, while 
the water falls down some rock-work in form of a 
cascade. This has a pretty effect, but seems to alarm 
its beautiful inhabitants, and must be cold for them, 
I should imagine. . . . We came away amazingly 
pleased with having seen so extraordinary a place as 
Temple must be justly esteem'd. 

July 2nd. — Our daughter, Louisa Powys, brought 
to bed of a girl. 

July 6th. — Stayed with Caroline, Mr. Cooper being 
gone to London to meet his brother,^ Captain Williams, 
who soon after had the honour of being knighted by 
his Majesty for his gallant behaviour at sea. 

July i6ih. — My brother received a letter from his 
Excellency Lord Camden, saying that Lord Rawdon, 
a few days before, had offer d him a living in Essex 
to give to any one he chose, and if it was agreeable 
to our son Thomas,* it was at his service. So very 
unexpected a kindness from his Lordship, through 
whose interest my brother Dr. Powys had only the 
week before received the promise of being made a 
Canon of Windsor, was almost too much for our grati- 
tude to express by thanks. 

* Brother-in-law. 
' Mrs. Powys's second son. It was High Rhoding, in Essex. 



1796 July i^rd. — We all dined at the Speakers, Mr. 
Addington,^ at Woodley Lodge,* near Reading. 

July 26th. — My brother the Doctor went to London 
to kiss hands on being made Canon of Windsor. 

It is impossible to quote all Mrs. Powys's diary, 
and only the most generally interesting portions are 
selected, but to those who are interested in the 
neighbourhood of Fawley, I give the following list 
of people living in the different houses with whom 
a ceaseless round of hospitality was given and ex- 
changed. Her most intimate friends were her own 
relations the Coopers of Harpsden, and Bix ; Mr. 
West of Culham and Rose Hill, brother-in-law of 
Mrs. Lybbe Powys, junior ; the Freemans of Henley 
Park and Fawley Court ; Winfords of Thames Bank ; 
Grotes of Badgemoor ; Stonors of Stonor, (afterwards 
Lord Camoys) ; Atkyns Wrights of Crowsley ; Laws, 
then renting Culham Court ; Botelers of ** Paradise 
House,'' Henley ; Macclesfields of Shirburn Castle ; 
the Fanes of Wormsley, and Stapletons of Greys ; 
Hall of Harpsden Court ; Fanshawes, Jennings, and 
Howmans of Shiplake. The Rev. Arthur Howman 
was vicar of Shiplake fifty years ; he was also a Canon 
of Windsor, &c. 

August ^tL — Dr. Powys went to his month's 
residence at Windsor, and on 14th September dined 
at Mr. West's,^ Culham Court. 

October qtk. — Lady Williams sent for from Harps- 

' Afterwards Prime Minister, and in 1805 created Viscount Sidmouth. 
Married only daughter of Lord Stowell. 

* Now called Earley Court. 

' Mr. West from thenceforth lived at Culham Court The Laws, his 
late tenants, continued to live in the neighbourhood. 


den to Portsmouth, to meet Sir Thomas there, who 1796 
had taken five more frigates. 

October \Zth. — The Coopers, Mr. Coulson, and all 
of us to Hardwick. Sophia Charlotte's christening 
at Whitchurch. Dr. Powys godfather. Tom per- 
formed the ceremony. 

October 22nd. — All our gentlemen dined with Mr. 
Cooper of Bix, on a turtle. 

November yth. — I paid my first visit to Lady 
Malniesbury,^ as that family were just come to Park 
Place, which they had purchased on the death of our 
ever-to-be-regretted neighbour, Marshal Conway. 

November 22nd. — Went from Hardwick, where we 
had been staying, to Bath. 

November 26th. — The Duke^ and Duchess of York 
came to their house in the Crescent, the centre one, 
which they have just purchased, and the next day the 
Prince of Wales came to them. We were that Sunday 
at Queen's Square Chapel. The Duchess had taken 
a seat there, and was handed in by one of the gentle- 
men, her attendants, and the beautiful Mrs. Bunbury* 
was with her Royal Highness. 

November jpth. — At the concert new rooms to 
hear Signora Storac6. 

December j^rd. — At the play, **The Dramatist," 
and ** Agreeable Surprise." The Duchess there, who 
was at all the public amusements. 

December i^t/i. — Mr. Shrimpton and Mr. Powys 
dined at the Marquis of Lansdowne's.* Among many 

^ Lord Malmesbury, a diplomatist of the first rank, son of James 
Harris, Secretary and Controller of Household to Queen Charlotte. 

* Second son of George III. 

3 Lady Sarah Bunbury, n/e Lennox, daughter of second Duke of 
Richmond, much admired by George IIL in his youth. 

^ William, second Marquis. 


1796 other gentlemen the Archbishop of Bordeaux, a very 
agreeable man. He could not talk English. He 
now lives on a pension from our Government, tho' 
formerly in such state and magnificence at Bordeaux, 
as to have treated two regiments in his courtyard. 

December 22nd. — At the play to see Miss Wallace 
as ** Beatrice," in **With the Lock and Key." 

December 28/^. — To see Miss Wallace act " The 
Jealous Wife," which she performed incomparably. 

1797 January 2nd, 1797. — Monday, January 2, was 
Mr. Tyson's ball at the Upper Rooms, ^ and I fancy 
never any master of the ceremonies had a fuller, or 
one more magnificent, from the number of persons 
of quality then at Bath, of whom I will set down a 
list of those I can recollect seeing there. We were 
obliged to go an hour before it began to get a toler- 
able place, but by that means were fortunate to get 
very good ones near the throne (sofa, so called), 
placed there for the Royal Family. When they 
entered, the whole company got up, and continued 
standing while *'God Save the King" and **The 
Duke of Yorks* March" was played. The Duchess 
of York, and Princess of Orange were first led up the 
room and seated on the throne, the ladies of quality 
on benches on each side. The gentlemen none of 
them sat down, but the Prince of Wales, Duke of 
York, the Stadtholder, Prince of Orange, and many 
noblemen stood and talked to the ladies till the ball 
began, when they mixed with the crowd, which was 
immense, above 1400.' I will now put down the 

* Built by Wood in 1771, not the same rooms Beau Nash ruled over 
till his death in 1761. 

* The Duke was Commander-in-Chief of the Forces. 

' The ball-room of the Upper Assembly Rooms was ic6 feet long. 


names of the nobility I remember to have been there, 1797 
tho' IVe no doubt I shall omit many. 

Prince of Wales. 

Duke and Duchess of York. 

The Stadtholder and Princess of Orange. 

The Prince of Orange. 

Lord and Lady Harcourt. 

The Chancellor * and Lady Loughborough. 

Lady Mary Howe, and her sister. 

Lord and Lady Clifden. 

Earl of Sussex. 

Earl of Galloway. 

Earl of Miltown. 

Earl of Strafford. 

Lord Molesworth. 

Viscountess Downe. 

Earl of Peterborough 

Lord Ashbrook. 

Lady de Clifford. 

Marquis and Marchioness of Blandford. 

Duke and Duchess of Beaufort. 

Duchess of Rutland. 

Marquis of Bute. 

E^rl and Countess Inchiquin. 

Right Hon. Lord Caledon. 

Lady Mary Knox. 

Earl and Countess of Altamont. 

Countess of Ormonde. 

Lady E. Butler. 

Lady G. Sutton. 

Earl Milton. 

Lord Thynne. 

Marquis of Worcester. 

Lord Maiden. 

Lady Elizabeth Chaplin, Lady C. Johnstone. 

Count Travinville. 

Earl and Countess of Cork. 

Duke and Duchess of Newcastle and two daughters. 

Earl of Peterborough. 

' Then Lord High Chancellor. 


1797 Earl of Plymouth. 

Lord and Lady Hood. 

Lord Coleraine. 

Marquis of Lansdowne. 

Countess of Ely. 

Lady Malmesbury. 

Lords George and J. Beresford. 

Besides Baronets and their wives, innumerable. 

January j^rd. — At the play **The Deuce is in 
Him." The Royal Family there, and when Signora 
Storac6 sang **God Save the King," I do believe 
half the audience shed tears, as her manner, voice, 
and action was beyond anything one could imagine. 

January 6tk. — King's ball ; the master of the cere- 
monies of lower rooms ; a very full one, but nothing 
like Tyson's. Indeed, many of the nobility had gone, 
and the Prince, Duke, and Stadtholder s family ; very 
disagreeably crowded ; rooms smaller. The Duchess 
of York left early. 

Mrs. Norman had her post-chaise weighed, and 
it was thirteen and a half cwt. and five pounds, with- 
out the coach-box, trunk, chaise seat, or imperial. We 
none of us imagined it would have been so much. 
The pump-woman gives ;^iooo a year for the place. 
To mend the road two miles the London way costs 
;^2 2 a week. 

January nth. — We walked about the whole 
morning to take leave of our favourite place. The 
pump-room very full of company, many emigrants, 
and one with large gold earrings ; to us in England 
this appeared extraordinary, but is, I believe, common 
in France. 

January 14M. — Returned to Fawley. 

January 22^rd. — At a very elegant ball at Mr. 
West's, Culham Court About fifty were met about 


eight, and came home by six. His sister, Lady Matilda 1797 
Wynyard, and the Colonel were there to stay. Little 
Miss West^ came into the ball-room just before she 
went to bed, and seemed quite pleased with the music 
and dancing. 

February jth. — Had a letter of the death of Mrs. 
Hill of Court of Hill, Shropshire. We all went into 

February \^th, — Doctor Powys kissed hands on 
being appointed Dean of Canterbury.* When he 
went to the Queen's drawing-room her Majesty said 
she supposed she ought to congratulate him, but 
hardly could, as they should so feel his loss as Canon 
of Windsor, and desired she might have wrote out 
the four sermons he had preached to them there, 
which, as soon as he returned to Fawley, he did, and 
sent them with the following lines to her Majesty : — 

** To Her Majesty. 

" Madam, 

" By your command (which who can disobey?) 
These humble pages at your feet I lay. 
Which in the plainest language of the heart, 
The preacher's unaffected zeal impart : 
Not that the truths I teach, the rules I give. 
Can make you better think, or better live ; 
But when on Britain's throne the Royal pair 
Is known to make religion's cause their care. 
And their example a support affords. 
To Truth and Virtue, (past the power of words). 
In strongest language taught, their subjects see. 
From what they are, what others ought to be." 

* Charlotte Louisa, only child of Mr. West by his first marriage. She 
died in 1869 unmarried. 

'Mr. Pitt was instrumental in this. 


1797 March Zth, Fast-day. — The Dean preached before 
the House of Commons from 2 Chron. xv. 2.^ 

March 15th. — I rode out most days on horseback, 
as I had now got a little Welsh pony to carry me 
vastly well, which, after losing my black, I hardly 

March 2'jth. — Caroline and Cooper went to Lon- 
don to Sir Thomas Williams, to see his new ship, the 
Endymion^ launched. 

April 22nd. — The Dean went to Windsor, from 
thence to London and Canterbury. 

May \Zth. — The Dean returned from Canterbury. 

May 24/^. — Caroline (Cooper), brought to bed of 
a girl (Cassandra). 

June igth. — Died Mr. Vanderstegen at Cannon's 
End, near Hardwick, Oxfordshire. 

July Jth. — Cassandra Louisa s christening at 
Harpsden Church. Mrs. Austen and my daughter 
Louisa godmothers, Dr. Isham godfather. 

July 2\st. — Went to stay with Mrs. Winford at 
Thames Bank. We all went to a play at Marlow, 
bespoke by Major Goodenough, " My Grandmother " 
and **The Chapter of Accidents," very well acted 
indeed for a strolling company, and in a barn, that 
had not a stage to show the performers to advan- 

August 2 1 St. — The Dean went to Windsor. 

September ^th. — Poor Mrs. Micklem died at her 
house at Reading, the greatest loss to all who knew 

October loth. — First Henley ball. 

November 6th. — Henley ball. 

^ This sermon was printed by desire, and the thanks of the House 
formally tendered. The Dean was Chaplain-in-Or inary to the King. 


November 20th. — The Dean went to Canterbury. 1797 
We had intended going with him, but afterwards 
thought it better to defer our first visit to the large 
old Deanery till summer. 

December \^th. — I went to Harpsden. Mr. Powys 
and Tom went to Bletchingdon Park to shoot, and 
were robbed by a highwayman only four miles from 
Henley, on the Oxford road, just at three o'clock. 
We hear the poor man was drowned the week after, 
by trying to escape, (after having robbed a carriage), 
through some water which was very deep. He 
behaved civilly, and seemed, as he said, greatly dis- 

December 23^0^. — Edward drove Caroline and my- 
self to Reading in the tandem. 

January 29M, 1798. — The Gentlemen's Club. Caro- 1 798 
line and I met the Fawley Court family at the Hen- 
ley play. All the gentlemen came to the farce ; a 
very full house, and better performers than one would 
have imagined. "The Jew" and "The Poor Sol- 
dier." The company put ;^ioo into the Henley Bank 
to answer any demands upon them, and as a surety 
of their good behaviour. Rather unusual for strol- 
lers in general. 

February ith.—W^ all went to the Henley play, 
bespoke by the Freemans. A very full house, and 
to add to its brilliancy, the beautiful Miss Jennings^ 
was there. 

March isL — Set off for Bath. Went in the Dean's 
chaise to Newbury. From thence took a post-chaise 
and lay at Marlborough. Reached Bath about three 

^ The daughter of the virtuoso Henry Constantine Jennings, of 
Shiplake Court, by his second wife. Miss Nowell. Miss Jennings 
afterwards became Mrs. Lock. 


1798 on the 2nd. Friends were very angry with us, but we 
told them the truth, that we really wish to live a rather 
quieter life than theirs, but would certainly see them 
every day as long as they stay'd, but begged to be 
excused so many dinners and parties, as Mr. Powys 
riding, and I constantly walking all the mornings, we 
were so old-fashioned a couple as to enjoy ourselves 
(by ourselves), sometimes of evenings, rather than be 
always in such immense crowded rooms. 

March 24M. — At a party at Miss Cresswell's. 
Met Miss Sally More, sister to Mrs. Hannah More. 

March TfOih, — In the morning we went to see the 
exhibition of ivory-work, most exceedingly curious ; 
Windsor Castle, Greenwich Hospital, Eddystone 
Lighthouse, &c., most ingeniously carved from solid 
pieces of ivory. Likenesses of their Majesties aston- 
ishing well done. Any device carved for lockets, 
bracelets, rings, or toothpick cases in as small pieces 
as I did the cherry-stone baskets, and done with 
something like the same knives ; and must be equally 
trying to the eyes. 'Tis done by Stephany and 
Dresch, the only artists in this line. 

April ^rd. — Went to Mrs. Lutwyche's party 
(always at home on Tuesdays). We thought there 
were numbers of people, but Mrs. Lutwyche expressed 
herself quite hurt two or three times that Mr. Powys 
and I should be there the first time when she had 
hardly any company, **only seven tables,^ and that is 
so very few, you know. Ma am." I really am very 
ignorant, for I did not know it, and thought it a 
squeeze ; but how unfashionable I am in disliking these 
immense parties I kept secret. 

April Zth. — Went to the Octagon Chapel with 

* Card-tables. 


the Badderleys, to hear the famous Dr. Randolph. 1798 
Indeed he is a very good preacher, not quite so 
pompous as his predecessor. 

April nth. — Went in the evening to the Fantoc- 
cini. The whole in French, entertaining for once. 
Our daughter, Louisa Powys, was this day brought to 
bed of a son, Richard Thomas Powys. 

April i^th. — Returned to Fawley. 

May 26th, — This week we heard of my cousin 
Wheatley's eldest son, Captain Wheatley of the Guards, 
being taken by the French at Ostend. 

May 20th. — Dined at the Bishop of Durham's, 

June i^ih. — The Hon. Frederick West ^married 
to Miss Maria Middletort, of Chirk Castle. 

June 23^^. — I went to Brown's, the famous gar- 
dener at Slow (Slough), and purchased a number of 

July 1 2tk. — We all went to pay the bridal visit at 
Culham Court, and found Mr. and Mrs. West at home. 
Were most highly entertained by her playing on the 
pianoforte, accompanied by him on the tambourine. 

On Thursday, the 26th July, Mr. Powys and myself 
set off to pay the Dean our first visit at Canterbury. 



We left Fawley about ten, and got to Mr. Shrimp- 
ton's in London by three. We stayed in town all the 
next day, as we wished to see Miss Linwood's worsted 
work, then exhibiting at Hanover Square Concert 

^ Of Culham Court. His second marriage. 


1798 Rooms,^ and tho' we had heard so much in its praise, 
it fully answered every expectation ; indeed it is beyond 
description. They are chiefly taken from the most 
celebrated artists, as Raphael, Guido, Rubens, Sir 
Joshua Reynolds, Stubbs, Opie, &c., thirty- four pieces, 
besides the cave with a lion and tigress, which being 
at the upper part of the room, had a very fine effect. 
In the inner apartment is a fine whole-length Salvator 
Mundi, by Carlo Dolci.* We observed several Catholic 
gentlemen take off their hats as they stood admiring 
this fine portrait. Many people, Tm certain, must 
take many of them for real paintings, instead of 
needlework. It happened to be a pleasant day, and 
not too hot for walking, and as in London there are 
so many shops to dispose of one's money in articles 
one is apt to think cannot be got in the country, we 
traversed the streets from eleven to three, and again 
in the evening, but the Metropolis seem'd totally 
deserted, even in Bond Street hardly a coach to be 
seen. However, we had the unexpected pleasure of 
meeting Lord Camden, whom we had not seen since 
his return from Ireland, and he made us quite happy 
in telling us he intended to pay a visit at Canterbury 
the next week. 

We were not sorry to quit the dull town * the next 

Saturday^ July 2%th. — We got to Mr. Wheatleys 
about half-past two, and were received with the 
greatest cordiality by our relations at Lefney House, 

* Miss Linwood continued to exhibit till her death in 1845. In all, 
she worked sixty-five pictures in crewels on fine linen, exquisitely worked 
and shaded. A picture of Napoleon is in the South Kensington Museum. 

* She refused 2000 guineas for this, and bequeathed it to the Queen. 
Lord Spencer has several of her pictures. 

5 When is London dull now ? 


which they built some few years since, a fine situation 1798 
about four miles from Dartford in Kent. A beautiful 
view of the river, and long reach just opposite Par- 
fleet, where the Dragon, Ajax, and some frigates lay, 
with so many vessels constantly passing and repassing, 
make a most pleasing scene. Not so at the time 
of the Mutiny,^ as the Lancaster lay just against 
Lefney, and caused so much alarm that Mr. Wheatley * 
sent to the Admiralty for assistance. Major Wheat- 
ley, their eldest son, is now among the Guards that 
were taken prisoners at Ostend. They have often 
letters from him that they are all well treated and 
in good health. The latter is certainly a comfort to 
his family ; but as to the first, as the letters are seen, 
and sent open, it may or may not be true. His lady 
had just lain-in of a son at the time he went ; how 
great must her anxiety have been in such a situation. 

Mr. John Wheatley and Mr. Keeling (related to 
them, and to my mother by the Mitfords), were staying 
at Lefney. Miss Wheatley, and the most beautiful 
boy of three years old, little Leonard, quite the darling 
.of his parents as well as the whole family, and one 
could not help laughing when one thought of the 
dear little soul in the character of an uncle ! 

Sunday we had prayers and sermon at home, as 
no morning service that day at their parish church. 

Monday, July 30/^. — Went to see our old acquaint- 
ance. Lady Hardy, who when we lived at Hard wick 
House, Sir Charles and her Ladyship then resided 
about four miles from us at Woodcot Clump, Oxon. 
PVom thence we went to Lady Fermough's at May 

* General mutiny in the Royal Navy, 1797. 

' Mrs. Wheatley was a daughter of Mrs. Hussey (tUe Slaney), so 
first cousin to Mrs. Powys. 


1798 Place. We had the pleasure of meeting there besides 
the family our Bath acquaintances, Mr. and Mrs. 
Lutwyche, and the two Miss Mayos. After this we 
caird at Mr. Harance, Foots Cray Place, a house 
built after the model of Lord Le Despencer's— of 
course a magnificent one, many fine pictures. 

Tuesday, July 2^ si. — We left my cousin Wheat- 
leys after a most agreeable visit. As we passed 
through Dartford we had been desired to notice a 
very particular circumstance when you are up the hill 
at the end of the town, viz., the churchyard being 
higher than the steeple of the church, and it really 
is literally so, as we saw the tombstones above the 
spire! The road is beautiful the whole way. From 
Gravel Hill you've a fine view of Greenhithe Water, 
where at that time was a fleet of colliers ; at the 
1 8th milestone you see Mr. Roebuck's; at the 20th, 
Northfleet; at the 22nd you have a view of Graves- 
end, with the several men-of-war and East India 
ships lying there; on the right, about the 26th mile- 
stone, is Lord Darnley's^ and Mr. Day's, called the 
Hermitage; at the 27th, 28 miles from London, is 
Rochester, which seems but an indifferent town. 
After you are through it, you see Chatham across 
the river Medway, and the Marine Barracks. The 
Temeraire, man-of-war lay there. Then we got up 
Rochester Hill, had a view of the Nore at the 31st 
milestone, and three men-of-war, the Pallas, Scorpion, 
and Isis. Changed horses at Sittingbourne, 39 miles 
from London ; after through the town, had a view 
of that of Feversham. Broughton Hill we at 
last arriv'd at, which we had been shown by our 
postboy 14 miles off as being to ascend. Indeed, 

^ Cobham Hall. 


if it were not for the many beautiful views, and all 1798 
being new, the road is so hilly and sandy it must 
have appeared tiresome, as in one distance of 15 
miles you go up sixteen hills, and, indeed, having 
calculated our time by other roads, we sent the 
Dean word we should certainly be with him to 
dinner by half-past four, and at last he began to be 
alarmed, as it was past seven before we reach'd 

In driving up to the Deanery^ through the Green 
Court, as 'tis called, of fine elms, we were much 
struck by its appearance, as instead of the forlorn 
old brick mansion we had expected, we saw a good- 
looking white stone house, nine sash windows in 
front besides the staircase, a Venetian one, and on 
entering found the inside contained many capital 
rooms, modernly furnished, but as we were rather 
fatigued we did not go over the apartments till after 
dinner. On one side the hall is now a very good 
eating-room, on the other the library ; an excellent 
staircase which leads to two very noble drawing- 
rooms. In the first, which is 35 feet by 22, are the 
pictures of seventeen deans ; some (as now bishops in 
lawn sleeves), of these portraits have really a pleasing 
effect. Out of the first drawing-room is another 
large one, and out of each excellent bed-chambers. 
In the first drawing-room are seventeen of the Deans* 
pictures, two very good ones in the eating-room, 
the present Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Moore, 
and Worth, Bishop of Winchester. The four last 
Deans have not yet given theirs, which I think is 
not right, as they are certainly very ornamental in 
such a house, and there is room for twenty more 

* Once the Priory. Built by Prior Goldstone in 1494. 


1798 at least, tho' the best room is fiU'd.^ In another part 
of the house is that styled the Archbishop's bed- 
chamber and dressing-room, and many more, tho' 
not so large, and in the back part of the house 
numbers of small ones and spiral staircases, dark 
passages, &c., &c., which put one in mind of the 
haunted castles in our present novels, and in that 
antique style I had formed my idea of the whole 
house ; but, as I before said, it has been greatly 
modernised by one of the late Deans. 

Wednesday, August isL — I had numbers of ladies 
to visit me on my arrival, thirty-four, as I see by 
the list on the first three mornings in and around 
Canterbury ; and Mr. Powys nearly as many gentle- 
men. Tm sure the whole circle were uncommonly 
polite in their attentions to us. We that evening 
drank tea at Dr. Wolsby's, one of the prebends ; they 
have an excellent house in the Green Court, close 
to the Deanery ; in their drawing-room a very fine 
picture of Prince William of Gloucester* when young. 
Dr. Wolsby was tutor to his Royal Highness. We 
met at Mr. Wolsby 's Mr. Hallett, his sister, and two 
nieces, Miss Hayes and Mrs. Cotton. We had seen 
Mr. Hallett some years back at Culham Court. After 
tea we all walked to **The Oaks," another Green 
so-called, to see the regiments of the York, Hereford, 
West Kent, and supplementary militia perform their 
exercise, and a very pretty sight it was ; the music 

• ^ Mrs. Powys would be satisfied now, as thirty portraits of deans 
hang in the house, and Dean Farrar, the thirty-first, has had Uiem all 
cleaned. The following are the pictures in Mrs. Powys' time : Wotton, 
Goldstone, Rogers, Nevil, Fotherly, Boys, Bargrave, Eglionby, Turner, 
Tillotson, Sharp, Hooper, Stanhope, Lydall, Lynch, Friend, Pelter, 
North, Moore. 

* Duke of Gloucester, and brother of George III. 


of some of the bands very fine. Colonel Cotterel 1798 
(a relation of Mrs. Freeman of the Park^), was so 
obliging as to have his band entertaining the ladies 
(of whom numbers attend every evening), till half- 
past nine, always ending with '* God save the King." 
After that was concluded we all walked home. 

Thursday^ Augtist 2nd. — My Lord Camden, who 
had fixed for coming to see my brother that week, 
came to dinner, and brought with him the Bishop of 
Clogher, the gentleman to whom his Lordship had 
given the Bishopric of Killala when my brother 
refused it. The Bishop is a most agreeable man, 
and we were all happy that he was removed from 
Killala,^ though the poor man seem'd quite melancholy 
at the thought of returning to Ireland, now my Lord 
Camden* was come to England. Most happy were 
we all to see his Lordship again, and express our 
gratitude for the obligations he has conferr d on our 
family. He look'd vastly well, and, as ever, a most 
agreeable, sensible man. Mr. Wilson, one of the 
Canons of Windsor, who was tutor to Mr. Pitt, came 
to us that day for dinner, and as we had no lack 
of bedrooms, as at Fawley, he lay at the Deanery, 
as he was going to Walmer Castle (Mr. Pitt's*), the 
next day. We had a great deal of company that 
morning, and Dr. and Mrs. Wolsby to dinner. 

Friday, August T^^d. — Lord Pembroke and Lord 
Malmesbury in the morning. 

Saturday, August ^th. — Lord Camden left us to 

* Henley Park, Oxon. 

■ This was the year of the Irish Rebellion. 

^ On account of the Rebellion, Lord Camden was recalled by the 
Government, and a Viceroy who possessed military experience appointed 
in the Marquis Comwallis. 

^ Pitt was then Warden of the Cinque Ports. 



i79« pay a visit to Mr. Pitt. The Bishop stayed with 
us a few days, and was so obliging as to attend me 
that morning to see the Cathedral, which I think 
is one of the finest pieces of Gothic architecture I 
ever saw. 

August ^tky Sunday. — The anniversary of our 
36th wedding-day! I had that morning at Canter- 
bury a most formal ceremony to go through, tho' not 
quite equal to the above-mentioned in 1762! At 
half-past ten we went to the Cathedral ; my gentlemen, 
. who were to sit in stalls by the Dean's, proceeded to 
another door, and I was conducted solo by the Verger 
in a black gown and cap, holding a long staff, all up 
the choir, through such a concourse of officers, soldiers, 
ladies, gentlemen, and inhabitants, that I began to 
think I never should reach the Dean's lady's pew, as 
it is styled, quite at the upper end, where, when arrived, 
I was locked in by myself, and, as I supposed, every 
soul observing me, being in full view of the whole 
congregation (but one soon finds use reconcile one to 
most things, as the next Sunday I did not feel near 
so much at the same entree). The Archdeacon, Dr. 
Lynch, preached about twenty-five minutes, a most 
worthy, good, kind man. As to cathedral-worship, I 
daresay I may be wrong, but the chanting one's 
prayers does not to me seem devotion properly ex- 
pressed, and in general the clergymen who read them, 
and the boys who repeat, seem so evidently endeavour- 
ing to excel each other in vociferous exclamation, that 
it gives their characters too frivolous an appearance. 
As to anthems or sacred music in that style, it must 
ever be most awfully pleasing. After the service was 
over, at which numbers of regiments attended (as there 
then in Canterbury four or five thousand militia), 


the rest are assembled in the Cathedral churchyard, 1798 
and walk two by two into the outward part of the 
Cathedral, as a pulpit has been there erected, and 
divine service constantly performed to all those who 
had not been before. Mrs. Bridges desired me to 
come to her house to see the procession, as she has 
a beau-window just near to the great door. . . . We 
din'd on Sundays at three, the evening service begin- 
ning at five. 

Monday 6th. — After returning many visits, we took 
a long walk to what is call'd the Dungeon, but pro- 
perly Dain John, a sort of terrace above the city. 
On our return, Mrs. Wolsby conducted me through 
all the streets, but I must own I was disappointed 
in the appearance of Canterbury, though the inhabi- 
tants say 'tis amazingly improved lately. What it must 
have been I can hardly guess, as now 'tis certainly 
a melancholy, dirty town, streets all so narrow, and 
hardly any smart shops, whereas now in most country 
towns there are many capital ones. 

Tuesday 7th. — The Bishop of Clogher left us to 
meet Lord Camden at Mr. Pitt's at Walmer Castle. 
Mr. Pitt had sent to desire the Dean would come 
with him and lay there, which he did. Mr. Powys and 
myself dined that day at Mr. Hallett's at Higham, a 
sweet place four miles from Canterbury on Barham 
Downs ; fine prospect, very good house, and a distant 
view of Ramsgate Cliff. Our party at dinner twelve. 
. . . They wished us to stay cards, but as no moon 
and the days getting short, most of the company 
begg'd to be excused, and we got home by nine, 
just in time to hear **God save the King." play'd 
by the band arranged before Dr. Wolsby 's house in 
the Green Court, where Prince William had dined 


1798 with a large party. We were all invited, but had 
been engaged some days before to Mr. Hallett. . . . 

Thursday, August gth. — The Dean and Mr. 
Powys dined at the Archdeacon's, a large party of 
gentlemen. I went in the evening to a card-party 
at Mrs. Bridges ; only three tables, about thirty -six 
of us ; several ladies from the country. As winter and 
summer seem quite equal for routs ^ at Canterbury, 
every evening the card-tables are set out Friday, 
Mr. and Mrs. Shrimpton and Mr. Ewer came to stay 
with us. 

Sunday, 12th. — At the Cathedral, dined at Dr. 
Wolsby s, went at three to evening service, drank 
tea at the Doctors, and after, we all walked to Mrs. 
Milnes* at The Oaks, who had desir'd us to come to 
her house to see the soldiers exercise, and hear the 
band play. Mrs. Milnes' house in The Oaks is an 
ancient mansion, extremely large ; indeed, there are a 
great number of good ones belonging to the church, 
within the precincts. 

Monday 13M. — We all set off to Barham Downs 
by ten a.m. to see the troops reviewed. Twenty 
cannons fired a feu-de-joie in honour of the Prince 
of Wales' birthday (then thirty-six years of age). 
The whole garrison of the city paraded on the ground 
in front of the Royal Cavalry Barracks, and made 
a most brilliant appearance, forming a square con- 
sisting of artillery, the Prince of Wales', and the 
17th Dragoons, the West Kent, and Hereford Militia, 
with the supplementary men attached to each battalion, 
forming a body of near 5000 men. At eleven Sir 
Charles Grey came into the field, where he was met 
by Prince William of Gloucester, the Earl of Pem- 

^ 01d-&shioned name for this class of entertainment. 


broke,^ &c. The concourse of people, as one may 1798 
suppose, was very great ; in general the horses were 
taken from the carriages, and the company either 
remained sitting in them, or walk'd in parties on the 
Downs. The review over, the music ended with 
**God save the King." On our way back we paid 
a visit to the Milnes. We were not at home till three, 
then dressed and went to dinner at Mrs. Peiray's, a 
large party of thirteen, and in the evening a great 
deal more company to tea and cards. 

August 14^A. — We that morning received a letter 
from our son Thomas, with the most melancholy 
intelligence of the death of Lady Williams by a most 
unfortunate accident. As she was driving herself in 
a whisky, a dray-horse ran away and drove against 
the chaise, by which she was thrown out and killed 
on the spot ;* never spoke after. We were so alarm 'd 
for our dear Mr. Cooper,^ whose health had been so 
bad for some time, and who was one of the most 
affectionate of brothers, that we were quite miserable, 
and wrote immediately to Caroline that, if they the 
least wished it, we would return immediately after 
we received her next letter, and, as that must be 
some days coming, we were greatly distress'd, and 
hardly knew how to manage, as the very next day 
had been some time fixed on for us all to set out for 
our intended tour through the Isle of Thanet ; but 
when we came to consult about what was best to 
be done, we all thought, as our journey was to be 
only three days, we should really be much quieter 
and more alone than we could be at Canterbury, and 

* George Augustus, eleventh Earl. 

* This happened at Newport, Isle of Wight. 

' Their son-in-law, and brother to Lady Williams. 


1798 should be returned before the letter from home could 
arrive ; so on Wednesday, August 1 5th, M r. and 
Mrs. Shrimpton, Mr. Ewer, Mr. Powys, and myself 
set off a little after nine for Margate. On the right 
we passed Hystreath, a Mr. Dean's, and Renlow 
Church and ruins on the left, and one mile from 
Margate the famous inn call'd ** Dandelion," where 
are breakfastings in the season at is. 6d. each ; some- 
times 700 people there, balls, masquerades, &c. ; for 
the latter there were then printed advertisements 
posted up for the week following. We got to Margate 
a little before one,^ seventeen miles from Canterbury, 
It is now become one of the first watering-places 
in the kingdom ; the town well pav'd and lighted, 
many new buildings ; Harley Square very fine ; the 
assembly-rooms remarkably elegant, near 100 feet 
by 40. There are three public libraries, but Hall's 
claims the pre-eminence. In the centre a beautiful 
chandelier ; in the piazza round the library, seats are 
fixed for the accommodation of the company ; trinkets 
and toys of every description, which are raffled for, 
from one shilling to five guineas every evening. We 
din'd and lay at Mitchener's Hotel, from whence 
is a most noble view of the sea. Two English 
men-of-war, the Alchmeer and Iris, Swedish frigates, 
and thirteen merchant ships of that nation detained 
there. It was not known what their lading con- 
sisted of, but the largest supposed to be bomb-shells. 
As the hotel is on the Parade, numbers of these ships 
were close under our windows. 'Tis very unfortunate 
that few if any of the lodging-houses have a view of 
the sea, which makes most families prefer Ramsgate. 
We walked about till dinner-time, and again in the 

^ Four hours doing seventeen miles shows the state of the roads then. 



evening on the pier, for rebuilding of which an Act 1798 
of Parliament was obtained in 1787, and is now 
finished, and is the fashionable promenade of the 
place. A fine large shop is opened there, where the 
company may have fruit, cakes, ices, jellies, &c. 
Seven yachts go to, and from London every day, from 
70 to icx> tons burden, furnish'd with good beds and 
every accommodation. At the time of going out and 
coming in of a packet, the pier is so crowded that 
'tis not uncommon to see upwards of a thousand 
people of all descriptions making their remarks, and 
laughing at the sick passengers, after a disagreeable 
voyage. The morning amusements after bathing, are 
riding and walking, in the evening going to the diffe- 
rent libraries to raffle, which makes the theatre and 
assembly rooms less frequented than might be ex- 
pected. The most public walk is on the fort, on 
an eminence, from which is an extensive view of 
the sea ; the walks near the cliffs, with fields and 
meadows on one side, and the wide extended ocean 
on the other, all beautiful. 

Thursday i6th. — We set off about half-past nine 
for Ramsgate. About two miles from Margate is 
seen the beautiful Church of St. Peter's, a well-known 
sea-mark. We went the road to Broadstairs thro' 
Kingsgate, two miles from Margate. It received 
that name by order of Charles II. at the time he 
landed there, in his passage with the Duke of York 
from Dover to London in 1659. Holland House 
fronts the sea, nearly opposite to which is a small 
fortification with port-holes for cannons. At a small 
distance is a commodious house for accommodation, 
and affords good entertainment for visitors, of which 
large parties dine, and drink tea during the season. 


1798 When the tide is out, the sands afford a most pleasant 
ride or walk. We pass'd a fine lighthouse, and the 
Goodwin Sands, at which a ship without a mast 
always lays at quarantine.^ At Broadstairs, about 
three miles from Margate, we only stopped to take 
a view of the place. 'Tis a very pleasing one. The 
pier was destroyed by a storm, January 1767, but 
the harbour being of g^eat utility, it was rebuilt by 
voluntary subscription in 1772. It commands a most 
extensive view of the coast of France to the south- 
ward. . . . 

We soon got to Ramsgate — a large, pleasant 
town, well paved and lighted, the lodging-houses 
much more agreeable than those at Margate, as most 
have a view of the sea from Sion Hill, and Albion 
Place. The former fronts the pier, which was begun 
in 1750, and is a great attraction to strangers, though 
not yet finished. From thence you see Dover. The 
harbour is commodious, and used for a place of 
refuge for the shipping in bad weather, and will 
contain upwards of 300 sail of vessels at one time. 
The assembly-rooms front the harbour, and are much 
attended ; balls once a week during the season, at 
which Le Bas, master of the ceremonies, attends 
from Margate. After having viewed everything, we 
proceeded on our tour. 

About a mile from this town we saw Pegwell 
Bay. We then went thro' Sandwich. Richborough,* 
situated between Ramsgate and Sandwich, is said 
to have remained in a respectable state above a 
thousand years, when both town,' and castle were 

* Mrs. Powys must mean the lightship 
' The Roman castle, Rutupium. 
' Town of Stonar. 


destroyed by the Danes about the year a.d. iooo. 1798 
Not the least trace of this city is now to be found, 
and the ground has become an open cornfield. The 
walls in some places are 12 feet thick, composed of 
flints and Roman bricks. The whole eastern side 
of the castle is destroyed, the remainder ruinous and 
overgrown with ivy, and stands a monument of its 
former greatness, in its present melancholy state. 
We pass'd the Earl of Guildford's, and went by the 
saltpans, where they make salt. We reach'd Deal 
to dinner at 3.30. We went to the ** Three Kings," 
a very bad, dirty inn indeed, but were in some degree 
compensated by our eating -room opening into a 
balcony the length of the house, commanding a most 
beautiful view of the sea. We counted seventy-two 
sail. Some very large ships lay there — the Ardent^ 
Superb y Severn^ Ariadne^ Fairy y and Eugenie sloops, 
a Swedish sloop of war, with twenty-three sail of 
detained Swedish vessels remaining in the Downs. 
It was very entertaining to see the boats putting off, 
or coming on shore, at the beach under the windows. 
After dinner we proceeded on our journey, and very 
near Walmer Castle (Mr. Pitt's), then passed Dover 
Castle, from which we descended the hill into the 
town. Dover Castle is just seven leagues to Calais, 
The cliffs there, now appeared to us very plain ; could 
distinguish a ship laying there, and the different 
colours of their cornfields. 

We went to the York Hotel, Mr. Payner's, an 
excellent inn, and most civil people ; there we drank 
tea, supp'd, and lay. Mr. Pitt, and the Chancellor, had 
been there in the morning to read the French news- 
papers just come in, but they contained nothing of 
consequence. This hotel must have suffer 'd amazingly 


1798 since the war with France, as the travellers to, and 
from both kingdoms, usually frequented it, and in 
many different parts was wrote up in capitals, " Chaise 
de la poste/' &c., &c. After breakfast, we went up to 
the castle ; we had been informed we could not now, 
as in time of peace,^ see hardly any of the interior 
part, which undoubtedly is quite right ; no one is 
admitted, as there have been great improvements, 
and a subterranean passage from the castle to the 
city, all under the hill. Over that gate we entered, 
are the governors apartments. There is an old 
tower, built by Claudius Caesar, at a distance from 
the present castle ; the latter, our conductor told us, 
was by Queen Elizabeth. From thence we saw 
Calais and some spires of its churches ; and had it 
been evening, we should have had a much clearer 
view of it. The soldiers since the war have erected 
small thatched cottages about the castle for themselves 
and families. We, of course, went to view Queen 
Elizabeth s pocket-pistol, (the cannon so called), and 
Shakespeare's Cliff, which indeed seems a most tre- 
mendous height. It is supposed that any one standing 
on one of the highest turrets of Dover Castle is as 
much above the valley below, as the highest Egyptian 
pyramid is from the ground on which it stands — the 
measure taken is 499 feet. A French general that 
was lately taken, and brought to Dover, behav'd very 
ill, and was most exceedingly angry at not being suf- 
fered to walk about in this garrison town, which, if 
he had the least consider'd, was not the least likely he 
should have had leave. We dined at our inn, and 
about three set off for our return to Canterbury. . . . 
Sunday, August 19///. — The Dean preached. After 

* Nelson had just won the battle of the Nile, against the French. 


evening service to tea at Mrs. Milnes' at The Oaks. 1798 
To see the troops in the evening. 

Au^st 20th, — Went to return our visit to Sir 
Harry and Lady Oxenden, who reside about eight 
miles from Canterbury ; a fine place,^ a noble old 
mansion standing in a park. There are eight rooms 
a floor. You enter a fine hall. Sir Harry has a most 
capital collection of pictures, for which he built a fine 
room, 40 feet by 28, and 20 in height, in which are 
thirty-one pictures, all by the best masters. For one 
he was the other day offered seven hundred guineas, 
and not a large one. Returned to dinner ; in the 
evening had a card-party — only five tables — the 
seventeen Deans in that drawing-room looking down 
upon us as if smiling at the difference of the times, 
some of them most likely never having seen a card- 
table. However, I hope they approved. The early 
hours of Canterbury, so different from those of the 
metropolis, as company had all left the poor Dean solo 
before ten o'clock. I forgot to mention the library 
belonging to the church of Canterbury, reckoned a 
very fine one, containing many valuable books, which 
are annually added to, and a great many curiosities, 
which Mr. Weston was so obliging as to show us. 

Tuesday y August 2\st, began the diversions of the 
race-week. Mrs. Shrimpton and myself, before our 
tour, had each of us bought a summer white Can- 
terbury muslin* of the famous Mr. Calloway, as all 
the ladies, in compliment to his manufactory, intended 
to appear in them at the balls. As to going to the 
assemblies myself, I had given up all thoughts of, after 
I heard of the death of poor Lady Williams. I had 

* Broome Park. 
' Several hundred persons were then employed in this manufactory. 


1798 received a letter from Caroline to insist on our not 
shortening the time of our return, as his (Cooper's), 
health was tolerable, and it was time alone, could 
restore peace of mind ; but I insisted on my friend 
Mrs. Shrimpton attending all the gaieties of the week. 
We dined that day at two, and at half- past four went 
to the race-ground. I stayed in the carriage for the 
reasons afore mentioned. The ladies in general went 
into the stand, which we were told is an excellent one, 
one room enclosed, and an open balcony for those 
who choose to stand out. So pretty a course I never 
saw ; 'tis on Barham Downs ; the view pretty, and 
many gentlemen's seats around there. The race was 
rather better than most are at this period ; but the 
vast number of the military, carriages, &c., made the 
most gay appearance possible. Mrs. Shrimpton went 
with Mrs. Wolsby, and other ladies, to the ball in the 
evening, which was very brilliant. Prince William 
was staying at Dr. Wolsby's for the whole week, and 
made it a point to attend everything ; and everybody 
was charmed with his affability and good -humour. 
There was a public breakfast each morning at twelve. 
August 22nd. — It was very crowded this day, and 
dancing after the breakfast. Dined again at two, 
went to the course at four, started at five. The com- 
pany seemed as numerous as the day before. 

Thursday y August 23^^. — A charity sermon was 
preached by the Dean at the Cathedral for the benefit 
of the hospital ; indeed I must say an excellent one ; 
and as I walked down the choir I was continually 
complimented by numbers of the audience in my 
brother's name on the pleasure they had received. 
The Dean was much gratified that there had not been 
known so large a collection, ;^i29, 9s., besides the 


box. Prince William gave ;^io. This was all men- 1798 
tioned in many newspapers, and the discourse on the 
occasion much praised. Mrs. Shrimpton went again 
to the ball, equally brilliant with the former one. 

August 24M. — We dined again early, as some of 
our gentlemen went to the course. Our friends Mr. 
and Mrs. Shrimpton, and Mr. Ewer, were obliged to 
leave us that evening, as they could not get any 
lodging at Ramsgate or Margate, and it was got so 
late in the season. As they always go to the sea in 
the autumn, they were rathqr in haste, as they wish'd 
to return home before they proceeded on their other 

Saturday^ August 2^th. — The races being now 
over, and Prince William having been so engaged 
each day that he had it not in his power to accept the 
Dean's invitation to dine with him till now, and he 
hoped it would be no inconvenience to us to dine 
at four ; for as there was always a play to end the 
week's diversions, he had been requested to bespeak 
one for that evening. Dr. Wolsby had before hinted 
to us that the Prince did not like only a gentlemen's 
entertainment, so we desir'd Dr. and Mrs. Wolsby 
to bring with them Miss Letitia Sands and Miss 
Burt, two very pretty young ladies she had been 
chaperone to at the balls, and with whom the Prince 
had danced both nights. We had fourteen in all, 
besides Prince William, and the four above men- 
tioned ; his two aides-de-camp. Major Ellerton and 
Captain Hambleton ; Lord Pembroke, and his aide- 
de-camp, Captain D'Urbin ; Major Fellows, Major 
Gore, and ourselves. In the morning, not having 
been used to the company of princes, I rather wished 
the day over ; but we had not been in the drawing- 


1798 room ten minutes before his agreeable easy manner 
made one so perfectly acquainted, that I found I could 
talk to him with the same nonchalance as to any other 
officer in the room. When dinner was announced, 
he took my hand and led me down to the eating- 
room, which was rather a long promenade, but we 
had room sufficient to show how we performed, as the 
staircase, and approach to it is spacious. He placed 
himself next to me, and tho* the two beautiful young 
ladies were very near us, politeness, no doubt, made 
him address most of his conversation to the Dean's 
sister, tho' an old grandmother! And indeed (like 
his Majesty), I do think he was never a moment 
silent ; but it gave me pleasure to see, despite his 
volubility, that he performed well on most of the 
dishes, particularly on a fine haunch of venison sent 
us by Lord Pembroke. While at dinner, he told 
me I must go to his play. ** I should certainly," I 
said, **wait upon his Royal Highness." ** And will 
you oblige me with tea and coffee soon?" "Un- 
doubtedly." After that the carriages were ordered, 
and he conducted us to the theatre, and led me into 
his box. ** God save the King " was immediately 
played, and then the curtain drew up. The comedy 
was ** The Castle Spectre,*' and ** Spoil'd Child." Per- 
formance tolerable ; but what seem'd to give the 
Prince the highest satisfaction, the house was im- 
mensely crowded. During the play (for he there 
talked almost as much as during dinner), he told me 
he was to sup at Dr. Wolsby's, and then leave Can- 
terbury and set off for Ashford. I said I feared his 
Royal Highness would be tired to death from his 
obliging attention. ** Oh, not the leasts for when 
tired I can sleep full as well in my coach as a bed/' 


There I envied him, for I never can, if ever so much 1798 
fatigued. The play over, his Royal Highness wished 
us a good night, conducted us ladies to the carriage. 
The Prince left Canterbury that night, or rather, I 
suppose, the next morning. 

August 25/^. — Dinner for Prince William of Glou- 

Salmon Trout. 


Fricando of Veal. Rais'd Giblet Pie. 

Vegetable Pudding. 

Chickens. Ham. 

Muffin Pudding. 

Curry of Rabbits. Preserve of Olives. 

Soup. Haunch of Venison. 

Open Tart Syllabub. Rais'd Jelly. 

Three Sweetbreads, larded. 

Maccaronl Buttered Lobster. 



Baskets of Pastry. Custards. 


Sunday y August 26tk. — On Sunday the boys at 
the King's School, all passed thro* the Green Court 
to the Cathedral, which was a pretty sight from our 
chamber windows. 

I forget to mention a sad catastrophe which hap- 
pened in the garden of the Deanery to one of the 
finest and by far the largest mulberry -tree ^ I ever 
saw. It was supposed to be from a thunderstorm 
which happened one night, as on the next morning 
we found about half of the immense bough lying 
on the ground, and yet not quite broken off. My 

* There are several mulberry-trees now, said to have been planted 
by the monks. 


1798 brother sent for a famous gardener, who propped 
them up, as he said to saw them off would be in- 
juring the main trunk. How it may be another year 
one cannot say ; but the broken branches that season 
produced as many mulberries as usual, to the great 
joy of the young ladies and gentlemen of the schools, 
whom the Dean invited daily to amuse themselves in 
gathering them. 

August 28M. — Mr. Powys and myself set off from 
the Deanery about one in the Dean s chaise. We 
chang'd horses at Sittingbourne, and then went to the 
** Bull Inn," Rochester, the landlord, Mr. Paternoster, 
an uncommon as well as odd name, where we lay, and 
found it a noisy, disagreeable house, as it happened 
unfortunately to be fair-day. 

August 2()th. — After breakfast we walk'd about 
Rochester to view the town. Deanery, &c. 'Tis 
eighteen miles from hence to Dartford. At Dartford 
we changed horses and took some egg-wine, and 
proceeded on our journey to Clapham. We got to 
the Shrimptons by four. 

August 2^st. — In the morning we went to London 
a-shopping, and at Wedgwood's, as usual, were highly 
entertained, as I think no shop affords so great a 
variety. I there, among other things, purchased one 
* of the new invented petit soupte trays, which I think 
equally clever, elegant, and convenient when alone or 
a small party, as so much less trouble to ourselves and 

Sunday, September 2nd. — At Clapham Church, 
heard a very Methodistical sermon. 

September /^th. — Mr. Powys and myself left our 
kind friends at Clapham, setting off about 9.30. Our 
own horses met us at Crawford Bridge. We dined 


at the ** Bull Inn," Maidenhead. Got home to Fawley 1798 
about six that night. 

November 1 3///. — Lady Malmesbury gave the 
colours to the ** Loyal Henley Association," ^ in a field 
just opposite Park Place. A tent was erected for her 
Ladyship and the company she invited, where the 
carriages set us down, and the ladies were handed into 
the tent by Lord Malmesbury, who had desired us to 
be there by half-past eleven. A sermon was preached 
by Mr. Jeston,^ after which her Ladyship presented 
the colours, and made a speech to the Association ; 
after which Major Jackson thanked her Ladyship in 
the name of the whole corps in a very manly oration ; 
and when the officers and soldiers had finished all their 
manoeuvres, the carriages were call'd up, and those 
who had before been invited to the cold collation 
drove on to Park Place, where in the eating-room, 
everything for the most elegant breakfast was set 
out. ... A dinner for all the gentlemen was at the 
town-hall at three. The weather was intensely cold, 
but it happened most luckily to be a very fine 

November \^th, — I was terribly alarmed by an 
express from my mother's servant, who, on going into 
the parlour about two o'clock, had found her fallen 
back in her chair, quite insensible, and all over blood. 
We went immediately to her, and sent for Doctor 
Taylor,^ but fortunately our apothecary, Coulson, lived 
next door, and by blisters, bleeding, and leeches, she 
was then greatly recovered before the doctor came. 

^ Henley-on-Thames. 

* The Rev. Humphrey. Jeston, then in sole charge of Henley parish, 
and Master of the Royal Grammar School there. 
' Of Wargrave. 



1798 He suppos'd she had broke a blood vessel, but tho' so 
much better, he told me not to be alarmed if, at her 
great age of eighty-six, she should be again seized 
in the same manner. I stayed with her a week, 
when, as she was so much better, and Mr. Powys 
confin'd at home by the rheumatism, I returned to 

November 26ih. — Gentlemen's dinner at Henley. 

November 2<jik. — Thanksgiving-day.' 

December 22nd. — Tom went to his living in Essex. 

1799 January ^rd, 1799. — On this evening. Lady 
Malmesbury gave a hdX\ at Park Place. The com- 
pany was to be there at nine. There were seventy- 
five of us, about seventeen couple of dancers ; 
twenty-one in the house, Lord Grantham and his 
mother, Lord and Lady Lavington, &c. ; cards in 
one room, and the dancing in the library ; tea, 

■ orgeat, lemonade, cakes, &c., brought round every 
half-hour. At one, supper was announced in the room 
out of the library, two tables the length of the eating- 
room, forming a crescent at the upper end in a beau- 
window. On this, every elegance was display 'd, and 
set off to the greatest advantage by gilt-plate, glass 
lustres, and other ornaments. By each plate was laid 
for the fruit, a small gold knife and fork, and two 
dessert spoons. About half-past two we return'd to 
the library, and the dancing recommenced ; at three, 
coffee was carri'd round, and after cakes, &c,, as 
before, the company began to disperse ; every one 
seem'd to have been highly entertain'd. The house 
is most superbly furnished with every elegance from 
Italy, France, and, in short, every country — fine 
pictures, pier-glasses, paintings, of the Vatican 
' For Nelson's victories over the French. 


Library, some curious tables, &c., that belonged to the 1799 
unfortunate Louis XVL, and many other curiosities 
too numerous to name, with the finest collection of 
books anywhere to be met with.^ But what gave us 
a real satisfaction, so intimate had we been with 
Marshal Conway and Lady Ailesbury, that it was 
really a painful sensation the idea of visiting again at 
Park Place ; but now the whole house is so totally 
altered, one cannot have an idea of its being the same. 
The noble library* the Marshal had just completed, 
we used to go up the staircase to. Those stairs are 
taken away, so that you now go through two elegant 
rooms, which were Lady Ailesbury's dressing-room 
and bedroom, making a suit of apartments to the 
library which has a very good effect, and renders the 
whole appearance totally different to those who were 
before perfectly acquainted with it. 

January 2fitlu — Went from Hard wick, to stay 
with Caroline, while Cooper went into Staffordshire 
to see his living at Hamstall Ridware, that Mrs. 
Leigh' had just been so kind as to present him to. 
The roads were so bad with snow and frost, we 
were obliged to go round by Caversham, but got 
safe to Harpsden to dinner. 

February i^/.— It continued snowing, and was so 
deep we were much alarmed for Cooper on his journey, 
as he had promised to write ; but the Oxford mail 
had been stopped that day, a circumstance that had 
not happened for thirteen years. 

February 2>^d. — Snow continued, but we were 

^ Collected by James Harris, the great literati, &ther of Lord 

' This was pulled down by Mr. Easton in 1867. 

^ The Leighs of Addlestrop, Gloucestershire, and Stoneleigb, War- 
wickshire. Cooper's mother was a Miss Leigh. 


1799 happy in having a letter from Cooper to say he was 
got safe back to Oxford, having been forced to walk 
many miles, and hoped by the same method^ he 
might be able to get home the next evening. There 
was no church on the Sunday at Harpsden or Fawley, 
as no one could get to either. The icicles on the 
trees hanging down was a most beautiful sight, when 
the sun shone on them. 

February ^tk. — A hard frost Cooper came by 
the Oxford stage. It continued to be snow and frost 
till February 15th, when it thawed. On the 19th the 
floods on the Thames, and Loddon, from our windows, 
was quite astonishing. 

March 28M. — Mr. Powys and I went to Hard- 
wick on our way to Bath. Reached Bath on the 29th. 

March ^is^. — Arrived the first news of the Aus- 
trians having beat the French.^ 

April gth. — At Mrs. Lutwyche's party in the 
evening. Ten tables, six to each, and numbers who, 
like us, did not play. 

April I \th. — At the play, " Laugh while you can,' 
and '' Blue Beard." 

Sunday y April i/^th. — Mr. Clark preached, I 
went to church at half-past ten. Mr. Powys was 
just then taken with a bleeding at the nose, but, as 
much used to it, he desired Td go, and he would 
follow me. But having stayed out the service in 
great anxiety, I returned home and found it still 
bleeding, and had never ceased. I sent to the apothe- 
cary, who gave him something without effect. I then 
sent for Mr. Grant, the surgeon, who advised me 
to send to Dr. Mappleton as acquainted with his con- 
stitution. The doctor being out, it was between four 

* A contrast to travelling in 1898. ' At Montenotte. 


and five in the afternoon before he came. Poor 1799 
Mr. Powys was near fainting, and I from my fears 
could hardly support it. But the doctor beggd me 
not to be alarmed, as he was almost certain he 
could stop it by Ruspuns Styptic, which was directly 
sent for, and as soon as applied stopped the bleeding, 
and most thankful was I, as he was really nearly 
exhausted, and the loss of blood must have been 
immense. The doctor told us he knew not what it 
is, but though a quack medicine, it was wonderful 
the cures he had known by it in wounds, inward 
bruises, or bleeding at the nose, and he advises every 
one to keep some in their house, which I certainly 

April I St A. — Tyson's, the Master of the Cere- 
monies ball at the Upper Rooms. We were to have 
been there, but after the fatigue and anxiety of the 
day before, we did not think of it. Mr. P. was better 
than could be expected, tho' extremely weak for a 
long while. 

April igtk. — Having been very indifferent ever 
since Mr. Powy's illness, and too low and nervous to 
be blooded, I was, by Dr. Mapleton's advice, cupped^ 
by Mr. Grant. 

April 26M. — At a party at Mr. Purvis s ; six tables. 
Went from thence to a party at Mr. Leigh Perrot's ; * 
eight tables, ninety people. The Prince of Wales was 
at Bath when we were. He was not very popular, 
from the company he brought with him — Mr. Sheri- 
dan's son, and Mr. Day. The latter s great merit 

* Truly a Sangrcuio system. This, and Mr. Powys*s case, are 
examples of " survivals of the fittest." 

' Of the Leighs of Addlestrop ; took the name of Perrot, on succeed- 
ing to a portion of the Perrot estates at North Leigh. 


1799 seem'd to be that he could drink at a sitting two 
bottles more than any one. The Prince once said to 
him, " You are a jolly fellow, Day. When I am king, 
rU make you a peer by the title of my Lord Cinque 
Port'' Not a bad pun of his Royal Highness ! A 
Miss Fox, a very beautiful girl, was of the party, but 
kept quite invisible. His Royal Highness was almost 
constantly at Mrs. Carr s, attracted by the beauty of 
her two daughters, the Misses Gubbins, though it 
was said the most beautiful. Miss Honor, was not the 
Prince's favourite, but both play'd and sang to him 
every evening, and he generally supped there. The 
poor girls are really to be pitied, as 'tis not their's, 
but their mother's fault, to be in such a constant 
round of dissipation, and playing very deep at cards, 
from the same bad example. I think the Prince looked 
in better health than the year before, but they said he 
was not, and though he came to drink the waters, from 
his manner of living they certainly could not be of 
much service. Bath always abounds in droll anecdotes, 
and on its being thought the Prince looked very dull, 
it was given as a reason that a few days before he 
left London he had had his fortune told. The manner 
of it is, the person puts in his hand to a person that 
is invisible, who having observed it a little while said, 
"You'll not live long." The Prince not liking, I sup- 
pose, this observation, came again the next day in 
quite a different dress. When on again putting in his 
hand, the voice said, " You'll not die a natural death." 
This still more discompos'd him. Indeed it was no 
wonder, and we all could not help wishing it might 
be a warning for him to behave more proper to 
his high station. The Duke of York was fearful he 
might not be graciously received, and sent to the 


Mayor before he came, that he might However, 1799 
the lower class cannot always be led, and as he got 
out of his carriage, call'd out very vehemently, 
** Where's your wife ? Why did you not bring your 
wife, as your brother does?" He did not stay long, 
and carried Mrs. Carr and her daughters to London, 
where it is said the former was to set up a faro 

The famous Mrs. Macartney left Bath this spring, 
and is gone to a house, her nephew, Mr. Greville, 
lent her in London. She says she "must come to 
Bath for her health sometimes, but had rather live 
in hell than on the Queen s Parade, where the families 
were so shockingly impolite as not one to visit her." 
She offered her hand lately to Colonel Mackenzie, 
who refused it, and kindly gave notice to her nephew, 
Greville, to look after his curious aunt. 

The once celebrated beauty. Miss Wroughton, 
still keeps up her consequence by her large parties, 
and fine concerts every Sunday evening, where Ran- 
zini, and many amateurs sing and play. The Prince 
always attended to hear Miss Mayo (Mrs. Lutwyche's 
niece), sing and play, and indeed I never heard any 
one so charming. Not that I attended Miss Wrough- 
ton's Sunday concerts, as I quite agreed with the two 
amiable Duchesses of Newcastle, and Hamilton, who 
never would appear there on those evenings. The 
amiable Lady Nelson, who as usual was at Bath with 
her father-in-law,^ had some music sent her from Russia 
endeavouring to be expressive of her lord's victories. 
She sent it to Ranzini, and some of the opera musicians 
came from London to perform it. The great ball- 
room was the place fixed upon, and there were about 

^ The Rev. Edmund Nelson. 


1799 one thousand three hundred people, but the amateurs 
were disappointed, as the ** Battle of the Nile,"^ as 
one might suppose, was only a monstrous continued 
noise. But, however, every one was grateful to her 
Ladyship. I think I never saw any one more altered 
in the course of one year than Lord Nelson s father, 
a most worthy old man with long grey hair, but seems 
now so broke at his son s victories, which he says is 
literally being overcome with joy, so much so that 
he can hardly bear it. Dr. Randolph, the celebrated 
preacher, had the living of Bradford given him, but 
does not reside there, which the King, when he heard 
that he was constantly at Bath, said the chapel there 
was no cure of souls. Coals in April 1799 were only 
lod. a bushel at Bath, when 5s. in London, viz., jC9 
a chaldron. 

May 4/^. — We left Bath. We wished to return 
home, as we had received a letter lately from our son 
Thomas to inform us he was going to add another, 
daughter to our family. We got to Hard wick for 
dinner about half-past four, and on the 5 th returned 
to Fawley. 

May 7M. — The weather amazing cold, and jtho' I 
began to ride as usual in summer before breakfast, 
I could hardly bear it. 

May 22rd. — Phil went to London to kiss hands 
on his being appointed Clerk of the 'Chequer. 

Lord Bayham's (the present Earl of Camden), 
first son was christened on the 6th June 1799 by 
the Bishop of Clogher. My brother, the Dean of 
Canterbury, was to have performed the ceremony, 
but as his Majesty was godfather, it s always then a 

* Fought on August ist, 1798. 


July 15///. — Mr. Powys and myself set off by eight 1799 
in the morning to Mrs. Powney's, Ives Place, to meet 
our cousin, the Marchioness de la Peire,^ as they have 
at last arrived in England after numerous distresses 
they had met with during the war. The Marquis was 
not at all well ; she looks amazingly so, for all that 
she has gone through. We had not seen her for 
nineteen years. Of course, she was not the very 
beautiful woman we remembered her on leaving Eng- 
land, but still a fine countenance. The eldest of their 
four daughters, Clementina, was with them. 

July iSl/i. — The review on Bulmarsh Heath." 

July 2^th. — The Shrimptons, and Miss Palgrave, 
came from Hard wick to stay at Fawley, and we had 
the pleasing satisfaction of finding our future daughter- 
in-law ' as amiable as she had been represented to us. 

August 2bth, — Dined at Fawley Court, to hear 
the two famous musicians, the Leanders, play on the 
French horn, who Mrs. Freeman had down for a 
week, and invited the neighbouring families round, in 
different parties every day. It certainly was a very 
high entertainment. 

August 2yth, — On this day was buried Mrs. Amy- 
and,* widow to the clergyman, my brother, the Dean, 
succeeded to, in the living of Fawley ; they have a 
vault in the chancel. The hearse and six coaches 

* She was the daughter of Mrs. Flowyer, half-sister to Mrs. Girlc, 
Mrs. Powys's mother. 

" George III., the Queen, Dukes of York and Cumberland, the 
Speaker, and Prime Minister, Mr. Pitt, present. The Margravine of 
Anspach gave the Newbury troop colours. 

^ Miss Elizabeth Palgrave, eldest daughter of W. I^algrave, of Cottis- 
hall, Norfolk, was then engaged to the Rev. Thomas Powys, second son 
of Mrs. Lybbe Powys. 

* Widow of the Rev. Thos. Amyand, rector of Fawley from 1758 
to 1762. 


1799 of four, with servants, and her son and son-in-law in 
their own carriage. The ceremony was perform 'd by 
my brother about twelve. 

September gth. — Mr. Powys, and myself went to 
the Shrimptons' at Clapham to meet Mr. Palgrave, 
who had just come from Norfolk. Tom went a day 
or so before us. 

September loth. — Went to London. Saw the 
Panorama, which I think one of the cleverest inven- 
tions that can be, and this view of it was particularly 
interesting, as it was the view of Lord Nelson's vic- 
tory, which must give the highest satisfaction to all 
lovers of their country. 

September ibth. — Mr. and Miss Palgrave set out 
for Norfolk, and Mrs. Powys and myself for Fawley. 

September 2^r(i. — Caroline and Cooper went to 
his new living^ in Staffordshire for a few days to 
furnish the house ; the four children and two maids 
came to us. They had been staying a week at the 
Hall's,* Harpsden Court, previously. 

Sunday, September 13/A, was to me one of the 
most melancholy days I ever experienced, as it was 
to part me and my dearest Caroline, who was to set 
off the next day for Staffordshire ; and as Mr. Cooper 
was to do duty at Henley Church that day for Mr. 
Townsend, he thought it best they should all lay at 
Henley, to make the separation less dismal. They 
would not stay to breakfast, but set off as soon as 
they got up. The dear little children stay'd till after 
morning church, and not knowing or feeling any of 
the anxiety that we did, seem'd perfectly astonished 

* Hamstall, Ridware. 

' For convenience of the removal from Harpsden Rectory, in which 
they lived. 


to see us shed tears, and that we did not feel equal 1799 
pleasure with themselves at the idea of their journey. 

October 28M. — Mr. Powys and I went to Mr. 
Annesley's, Blechingdon Park. On 31st, Mrs. Annes- 
. ley drove with her sister Grace in her phaeton, and 
Lady Hardy and I went in the post-chaise to Blen- 
heim, to see the new china-rooms. They are not in 
the house, but built just after you enter the park, four 
little rooms fill'd with all sorts of old china fix'd to the 
walls by three screws, one of which takes out to let 
them be removed, others are placed on pedestals or 
shelves. The whole has a pretty effect, but to others 
might be more amusing than to Lady Hardy and my- 
self, as each of us has most of the same sort. 

November ^th. — Our dear son Thomas, was mar- 
ried at her father's at Cottishall, Norfolk, to Miss 
Elizabeth Palgrave.^ They set off the same morning 
for London. 

November gtk. — The bride and bridegroom came 
to us to dinner from Mr. Shrimpton s, and most happy 
were we to see them again, and told them we should 
not let them go to reside at their cottage * till after 
Christmas. Tom was now curate at Harpsden. 

November nth. — The Gentlemen's Club, at 
Dixon's, Henley. (First meeting of the year.) 

January ^jth, 1800. — Tom went to London, the 1800 
next day, to his living * at Essex. 

January 15/A. — Tom and Elizabeth, to our great 
regret, left us this day to reside at their cottage at 
Remenham, Berks. 

* They were married by the celebrated Dr. Parr. 
' Remenham Lodge. 

' Though curate at Harpsden, he was vicar of High Rhoding, a living 
in Essex. 


1800 January 2']th, — The Dean went to London to 
preach a charity sermon for the Welsh clergy. 

March yt/i. — We set out from Hardwick for 
Bath, to Mr. Shrimpton s lodgings, 36 Milsom Street, 
as they were so kind as to insist on our going to 
them till we could get lodgings to our mind. Bath 
very full. 

March wth, — At the play (Diamond's benefit), 
**The Stranger," and ** Shipwreck." 

March i^th. — At last got lodgings, No. 34 Gay 

March 27/^. — Went with Mrs. Shrimpton to 
Charlton's benefit — **The School for Scandal,"^ and 
**The Chimney-Corner." 

April ^th. — The Rev. Mr. Berners, of Hambleden, 
died in London, to the great regret of all our Fawley 

April 25M. — Returned from Bath. 

May 20th. — The Dean went to London to the 
lev^ey to congratulate his Majesty on his escape from 
the horrid assassins at Drury Lane Theatre, and 
Phil from Hardwick, went with his uncle. 

May 29M. — The Dean went to London to pre- 
sent the Canterbury address to his Majesty, with the 

June 24M. — Mr. Powys and myself went to stay 
with Tom at Remenham. That evening we cross'd 
the water to Fawley Court to see the night-blooming 
Cerus^ a very curious plant. 

* First produced in 1777. 

^ Hadfield's attempt to shoot the King, took place May 15th. 

3 Cereus grandiflorus^ of Jamaica, introduced in 1700 to England. 




Mr. Powys and myself set out in our own chaise 1800 
from Fawley, on Monday the 7th of July, about half- 
past six, took our own horses to Benson, where we 
breakfasted at Shrubs, and from thence had post- 
horses to our own carriage the whole journey. From 
Benson to Woodstock, and Oxford. At the latter we 
called on Dr. Isham and the Vice-Chancellor, Dr. 
Mario w ; dined at Chapel House, changed horses at 
Shipston, and Stratford-upon-Avon. We lay at Hock- 
ley, as wishing to avoid the noise of such an immense 
town as Birmingham, where we got to breakfast on 
Tuesday by ten, to Lloyd's Hotel, which inn quite 
answered the favourable description Mr. and Mrs. 
Atkyns Wright gave us of it. We set out to walk, 
upon the very worst pavement I ever saw, to see Mr. 
Bolton's manufactory, but very unfortunately we could 
not, as the very day before it had been advertised in 
the newspaper that it would not be shown any more, 
owing to some French emigrants having the week be- 
fore behaved very unhandsome when admitted there. 
However, we went to see the japan manufactory, 
which is certainly worth going to, but nothing equal 
to the button manufactory, the process of which is 
certainly one of the most entertaining I ever saw. I 
was presented with a most curious specimen (now in 
my fossil case), of one we saw made from beginning 
to end, of the most curious workmanship, with a purple 
stone in the centre. We after this walked a long time 
about this immense place, curious certainly to see, 
tho' its vast extent, crowds of dirty inhabitants, and 


1 800 bad pavement, made the whole not so pleasing. From 
hence we went to dinner at Lichfield, where Mr. 
Cooper sent a servant to meet us, with the key of a 
gentleman's grounds, going through which shortened 
our way to Hamstall Ridware,^ where we got to tea. 
Cooper had walked about a mile from their house on 
our arrival, at which our dearest Caroline ran out to 
meet us ; but after so many months* absence, she and 
myself were so overcome, that strangers might have 
supposed it a parting scene, instead of a most joyful 
meeting ; but my sorrow was soon turned to its 
contrast, to find them all so well, and pleasantly 

July gth. — In the evening we went a trout-fishing 
on the Blythe, a river running at the bottom of a 
meadow before their house. 

Thursday. — Walk'd up the village to Smith's the 
weaver, to see the manner of that work, and 'tis really 
curious to see with what astonishing velocity they 
threw the shuttle. * 

Hamstall Rid ware Church is a rectory dedicated 
to St. Michael, a very neat old spire building of stone, 
having two side aisles, chancel, &c., and makes a mag- 
nificent appearance as a village church. . . . 

Monday 2isL — That evening we all walk'd up to 
Farmer Cox s, a very fine high situation, and most 
extensive views ; indeed the prospect all round Ham- 
stall is delightful. This place is a mile north of 
Kings Bromley across the Trent, near Needwood 
Forest, about two miles west of Yoxall. The Blythe 
runs through the centre of the parish, and falls into 

* The living of her son-in-law, the Rev. Edward Cooper. 

• Power-looms were not introduced till 1807 ; the shuttle was then 
thrown, and batten worked by hand. 


the Trent. The present Mrs. Leigh gave Mr. Cooper 1800 
the living in 1 799. The ancestors of this noble family 
assumed their name from the town of High Leigh, 
Cheshire, where they were seated before the Conquest. 
Before Charles I. set up his standard at Nottingham, 
he march 'd to Coventry, but finding the gates shut 
against him, he went the same night to Stone Leigh, 
the house of Sir Thomas Leigh,^ where, as Lord 
Clarendon says, he was well received. Edward, Lord 
Leigh, took his seat in the House of Peers, March 
15th, 1764, and, dying unmarried, his sister, the 
Honourable Mary Leigh,* the present lady of the 
manor, succeeded to his estates here, and at Stone- 
leigh, (supposed to be about ;^i6oo a year), now her 
principal seat, is about fifteen miles from Hamstall 

Yoxall is a pleasant rural village,* situated in a 
valley on the south-west borders of Needwood Forest, 
seven miles from Lichfield and four miles from Burton- 
on-Trent. Good roads to both, and a turnpike across 
the Forest to Uttoxeter and Ashbourne. 

July 22nd. — We took a long hot walk to the 
village of Murry, to see a tape manufactory, of which 
seven gentlemen of that neighbourhood are proprie- 
tors. The noise of the machinery is hardly to be 
borne, tho' the workpeople told us they themselves 
hardly heard the noise ! Such is use ! The calender- 
ing part is worth observation, as the tapes all go 
through the floor of an upper room, and when you 

1 The King made him a baron in 1643. ^^ lived to see the monarchy 

^ This lady dying without issue, the property passed to their relations 
the Leighs of Addlestrop. 

^ Yoxall was in 1809 added to the Rev. Edward Cooper's livings by 
presentation of Mr. Leigh of Stoneleigh. 


1800 go down to the apartment under it, you see them 
all coming through the ceiling, perfectly smooth and 
glossy, where the women take them, and roll them 
in the pieces as we buy them at the haberdasher s, 
whereas in the upper room they all look tumbled 
and dirty. 

July the 26th had been a day long fixed upon 
by Mr. and Mrs. Bailey for a large party of the 
neighbourhood to dine in the Forest of Needwood. 
They had invited about forty of their acquaintance, 
who were all requested to meet at the great oak 
called Swilaar, famous for its immense size. The 
fete was to have been given in 1798, but that summer 
most of their friends were gone to different watering- 
places, and the next was such incessant rains, they 
were obliged to give up this rural entertainment, 
which most fortunately for us was postponed to the 
26th July 1800, a day for fine weather none could 
exceed. It seems Mr. Bailey had promised his friends 
a dinner in the Forest, if Mr. Erskine^ succeeded in 
gaining a cause for the relatives of David Garrick, 
of which Mr. Bailey was one. I think it was Mr. 
Peter Garrick who left about ;^30,coo to be divided 
according to a will he made, but at the time of his 
death, his faculties were so deranged by age and 
illness, being then eighty-five, that the apothecary 
who attended him contrived to make him sign an- 
other will, in which he left everything to himself. 
Of course the family had recourse to the law, and 
by Erskine's abilities was restored to their property, 
and the medical gentleman forced to quit the kingdom 
to save his life. Mr. and Mrs. Bailey had drove early 
in the morning to the Forest, to see all the dining- 

* Afterwards, in 1806, Lord Chancellor. 


tables placed under the shade of the trees ;^ and a 1800 
most elegant cold collation indeed it was, or at least 
I may say intended to be so, but we none of us could 
help laughing with the donors themselves, who told 
us, in placing the tables in the most shady parts, they 
had literally forgotten the sun was drawing on to that 
spot, as well as their visitors, so that the intense heat 
of the weather made the hams, tongues, chickens, 
pies, &c., &c., literally all lukewarm. After our 
repast the ladies made walking parties to different 
places in the forest ; some of us went to take a more 
correct view of the great oak, where we met in the 
morning. **'Tis styVd Swilaar Oak, or the Father 
of the Forest, girts at 5 feet height 21 feet, the 
lower stem 10 feet clear, the whole height 65 feet, 
the extent of the arms 45 feet. 'Tis supposed to 
be 600 years old, stands singly upon a beautiful lawn 
surrounded with extensive woods ; no elms or beech 
trees are met with in Needwood Forest; hazels, thorns, 
and maples, very few ash, and two very fine ancient 
limes of vast size." (From Shawe's ** Staffordshire.") 
N.B. — A copy of verses wrote by Dr. Darwin^ 
on this oak, reckoned very fine, I shall write at the 
end of this journal. Shawe states : " The Forest of 
Needwood, the most beautiful part of the Honour of 
Tutbury, is situate in the northern extremity of the 
hundred of Offlow, and in the four parishes of Tutbury, 
Henbury, Tatenhill and Yoxall, between the rivers 
Dove, Trent, and Blythe. In the reign of Elizabeth 
the Forest of Needwood was in compact by extenua- 

* Horace Walpole said there was a particular breed of bloodhounds 
in Needwood Forest, the size of a mastiff, blackish back, belly reddish- 

' Dr. Erasmus Darwin, author of "The Botanic Garden," &c., grand- 
father of Charles R. Darwin. 



1800 tion 23 J miles; in it 7869 acres, now said to amount 
to 9400, thinly set with oak and timber trees, well 
replenished with covers of underwood, thorns, and 
hollies ; the berries of the latter in winter are most 
beautiful. In the forest were ten parks." 

When the gentlemen retir d from the dinner-tables 
they were placed in a more shady situation for tea and 
coffee, against the return of the ladies from their walks, 
after which we again took a very long promenade to 
view the most picturesque scenes. From some parts we 
saw Dovedale, and other parts of Derbyshire. The 
company separated at different hours in the evening, 
according to their distances from home. 

Monday, 2%ih. — We all set out early in the morn 
to see Shuckborough,^ Mr. Anson s, and Hagley, Lord 
Curzon s. We went through Blythberry and Coulton, 
the latter a village rather remarkable for many of its 
cottages being built in a marl-pit with woods over it, 
the roots of its trees growing and hanging loosely 
over their little gardens, which are deck'd with all 
manner of flowers, and kept with the greatest neatness. 
We pass'd a Lady Blount's, a white house, a Catholic 
family, related to that of Maple-Durham, near Hard- 
wick. Shuckborough is a remarkable good house, finely 
furnished, and lately enlarged. There are numbers of 
valuable statues, busts, &c. Mrs. Anson, who was 
Miss Coke, daughter of Mr. Coke of Holkham in 
Norfolk, and married a Mr. Anson* in 1794, is, I 
think, one of the most capital painters, and excels in 
every kind of drawing. Every room is ornamented 
with some of her performances. Three of their chil- 
dren, full-length portraits, at the upper end of a large 

* Shugborough. 

* Thomas Anson, father of first Earl of Lichfield. 


room, IS, I think, equal to any artist; also several 1800 
copies from Titian, and other famed masters. . . . 
We gave up going over the gardens, as we knew we 
should have a long walk at Hagley. On our way 
there, we passed the houses of two families much talk'd 
of in that part of the country in the year 1757, when 
a novel was wrote on the subject call'd **The Widow 
of the Wood." The real name of the heroine, . . . 
the hero. Sir William Wolsley. Their houses very 
near each other ; both pretty places. We pass'd, too, 
the College Church, where the marriage was performed 
late in an evening ; but 'tis a droll history altogether. 
It was contrary to the clergyman's desire, but she 
begg'd it might be kept a secret the time of their 
marriage, and it was afterwards discovered she had 
another husband.^ We din'd at Wolsley Bridge, a 
very good inn. . . . We sent in our names for leave 
to walk round Lord Curzon's grounds,* and he desired 
we would go into any part of it we chose, without 
being attended by his gardener. The house seems a 
comfortable old mansion, with some new rooms, and 
more to be added. The grounds are delightful, the 
river running thro' them, and many beautiful cascades. 
After having gone a long tour we proceeded to mount 
the famous Cannock Hills, of a vast height, and having 
reach'd the top were quite repaid by the most beautiful 
scenes. I picked up some remarkable stones on the 
Cannock Hills. 

Thursday, ^is/. — We dined at Mr. Carey's, mini- 
ster of Abbot's, Bromley. Before dinner we went to 
see Lord Bagot's park. The number and size of the 
oaks here are quite astonishing ; nor had any of us 

* Sir William re-married. 

* Hagley is the property of Lord Lyttleton. 


1800 the least idea to what a size oaks would grow. His 
Lordship has been offered for them an hundred 
thousand pounds. 

Thursday, August yth. — We set out for Lichfield, 
which, having only seen as we came through it, we 
now determined to spend a long morning there in 
viewing the Cathedral, &c. We breakfasted by seven, 
and got there, as we intended, before the service 
began. The Cathedral^ is indeed a very fine one, 
not so large and unlike that of Canterbury, quite 
modernised by Mr. Wyatt; a fine window over the 
communion-table, painted by Egginton of Birmingham, 
a Carlo Dolce, the same as that we had just seen by 
the same hand put up at Mr. Stonor s chapel,* at 
Stonor in our neighbourhood, a present from Mrs. 
Stonor s father. The Dean (Proby) and Mr. Nares, 
the reviewer, were in residence and at church, the 
former a very old man. After service, Mr. Nares 
was so obliging as to walk over it with us, and as Mr. 
Shaw s account of the whole will be much more accu- 
rate than I could give, I shall set it down here : — ** Its 
dimensions in length, from east to west of the whole 
fabric, 411 feet, whereof from the west door to the 
great cross aile or transept, 179 feet ; to the entrance 
in the choir, 34 feet ; length of choir, 1 10 feet ; height 
of the great steeple in the middle, 246 feet. In the 
front 1 83 feet ; in the south of which are a peal of 
ten bells. Anno Dom. 1433, Hey ward sat Bishop of 
Coventry and Lichfield, the Cathedral was beautified 
in the ornaments thereof." Indeed, "the west front," 
says Fuller, ** is a stately fabrick, adorn 'd with excellent 
imagerie, which I suspect our age is far from being 

^ Commenced building in 11 29. Dedicated to St. Chad. 
' Stonor Park, Oxon, seat of Lord Camoys. 


able to imitate ; but alas ! " says he, ** 'tis now a political 1 800 
case indeed, almost beaten down to the ground in our 
civil wars." Plot says, ** Three such lofty spires no 
church in England can boast the like, being adorn'd 
with studs and carved work. The glazing and tracery 
in stone-work of the west window were the gifts 
of James I. ; a curious piece of art." Till then, the 
Cathedral remained in its pristine beauty, when it 
suffered greatly by three sieges,^ in one of which Lord 
Brook,* of fanatic principles, lost his life. He drew 
up his army, pray'd a blessing upon his intended work, 
earnestly desiring that God would by some special 
token manifest unto them His approbation of their 
desire, then planted their great guns by the south-east 
side of the close, when, by some accident, this Lord 
was shot in one of his eyes, as he lifted up his beaver 
that he might the more clearly see the execution done ; 
but though completely harness'd with plate-armour 
cap-k-pie, he suddenly fell down dead. Nor is it less 
remarkable that this accident was on the 2nd March, 
the festival of the famous Bishop St. Chad, to whose 
memory Offa, king of the Mercians, first erected this 
stately church ; but notwithstanding this Lord lost his 
life, the army of Cromwell exercised the like barbarisms 
as were done at Worcester, demolishing all the monu- 
ments, pulling down the cornices, carved work, batten- 
ing in pieces the costly windows, and destroying the 
records belonging to the church, stabled their horses 
in the body of it, kept courts of guard in the cross 
aisles, broke up the pavement, polluted the choir with 

* The first in 1643, when it was fortified for royalty. 

- He expressed the impious desire that he might behold the day 
when no cathedral should be left standing. He was shot by "dumb 
Dyott " from the middle tower. 


1800 excrement, hunted a cat with hounds through the 
church, and, to add to their wickedness, brought a 
calf wrapped up in linen, carried it to the font, 
sprinkled it with water, and gave it a name, in scorn 
and derision of that holy sacrament baptism ; and 
when Prince Rupert recovered the church by force, 
Russel, the governor, carried away the communion 
plate, &c. 

In September 165 1, a canonier dwelling in Staf- 
ford, who had been one of those that shot down the 
steeple at Lichfield Cathedral in the siege of 1646, as 
he was charging his piece (upon the arrival of Major 
Harrison), to be fired in triumph, was shot in the arm 
with that cannon, which suddenly took fire, his chin 
and arm lay shot off; he only survived a few days. 

Colonel Dawson, governor of Stafford, by autho- 
rity from Parliament, employed workmen to strip off 
the lead from this stately cathedral, October 165 1, 
and one Picton, July 26, 1653, knocked in pieces the 
fair bell call'd "Jesus." About the bell was this 
inscription : — 

" / am the bell of Jesus y and Edward is our king^ 
Sir Thomas Haywood^ first caused me to ring^^ 

Bells were esteemed sacred ever since they were 
first used in the year 604.^ 

The vestry at last was the only place that had 
a roof to shelter them during divine service ; the great 
steeple was laid down below the bottom of the great 
spire, the west front shattered, and all the doors and 
windows — 2000 shots of great ordnance and 1500 
hand-grenadoes having been discharged against it. 
Dr. John Hacket was appointed Bishop in i66i. 

* The first peal of bells in England were at Croyland Abbey, 


When he came down, he found his cathedral in a 1800 
state better to be conceived than described ; the 
honour of restoring it to its former splendour was 
reserved for this worthy prelate. The very morning 
after his arrival, he roused his servants by break of 
day, set his own coach-horses, with teams, and hired 
labourers to remove the rubbish, and laid the first 
hand to the work he meditated. 

From the Cathedral we went to the Rev. Mr. 
Saville's garden, who is a great botanist, and has a 
large collection of curious plants. We then went a 
mile and a half from Lichfield to a Mr. Glovers, 
whose paintings are in very high repute, more parti- 
cularly landscapes. After walking back to Lichfield, 
we amused ourselves going from shop to shop ; there 
are a variety of good ones in this city, particularly of 
the Wedgwood manufactory. 

N.B. — I forgot to mention among many new 
monuments in the cathedral is a very fine one to 
Lady Mary Wortley Montagu.^ 

August 12th. — All our party went a trout-fishing, 
but the heat was so intense it was hardly bearable. 

August 13M. — Mr. Cooper, and Mr. Powys, went 
to the assizes at Stafford. On their return they enter- 
tained us with a droll copy of verses on Lord Stafford's 
picture being hung up in the town-hall in 1 800 : — 

" With happy contrivance to honour his chief, 
Jack ^ treats his old friend as he treats an old sheep ; 
But with proper respect to the Garter and Star, 
Instead of the gallows he's hung at the bar. 
To remove from this county so foul a disgrace, 
Take down the old Peer, and hang Jack in his place." 

^ She died in 1762. The monument is by Westmacott 

* Mr. Sparrow. 


1800 Thursday i^tk, — I walked down to the river 
Blyth by seven in the morn to see Caroline and the 
three eldest children bathe, which they did most 
mornings, having put up a dressing-house on the 
bank. . . . 

Monday, August \%th. — We all passed a dull, 
gloomy day, the following one being upon fixed for 
leaving our dear relatives. 

We reached Fawley on Wednesday the 20th by 
seven o clock. 

August 26th. — Tom's daughter, Louisa Mary 
Powys, born. 

August 27th. — We went to see Elizabeth and my 
new grand-daughter ; both pure well. 

October ^th. — Louisa Mary Powys christened at 

October 27th, — Tom's little girl inoculated. 

October 2%th. — We went to stay at Mr. Fane's, 

October 2gth. — This morning Lady Elizabeth, 
(Fane), and all the ladies went in their coaches, 
attended by the gentlemen on horseback, to West 
Wycombe Park, to see the furniture, china, &c., of 
Lord Donegal, which were to be sold the next 
week. He had taken the house of Sir John Dash- 
wood for seven years, but by gaming, racing, and 
every extravagance he was obliged to have an 
auction and sell everything — very unpleasant to Sir 
John Dashwood who had a very fine collection of 
pictures and some furniture in the house. 

December ist. — My poor mother was again seiz'd 
with a second fit of apoplexy. I went to her most 
days, and by the seventh Mr. Coulson thought her 
near as well as before her seizure. 


January 2nd^ 1801. — My poor mother continued 1801 
very low and weak, and knew none of us for some 
time past. 

Jantmry ^th, — Caroline Cooper was brought to 
bed of a boy (on my birthday). He was christened 
Frederick Leigh Cooper. 

On the 8th of January, it pleased God to relieve 
my dear mother from that state of miserable insensi- 
bility she had so long been in, without suffering the 
least pain. She was eighty-nine years of age, having 
outlived my father near forty years, whose inexpres- 
sible loss I experienced 5th of July 1761. My mother 
was buried by him in Beenham Church, Berks. 

March ist. — Mr. Powys and myself set out for 
Bath. . . . 

March \th, — At Mrs. Lutwyche's party. Sixteen 
card-tables, fifty-six people. 

April yrdy Good Friday, — Mr. Sibley, and two 
other clergymen gave the sacrament. 

April 6ih. — Went to see the model of Rome. 
At Tyson's ball in the evening. The Duke and 
Duchess of York at it. 

April 20th. — Left Bath. 

May ^rd, Sunday. — Our son Cooper preached, as 
Caroline, himself, and family came to stay with us the 
week before. 

May 2 yth. — The Coopers, to our inexpressible 
grief, set out with their five dear children to Stafford- 

July \^th. — We went to see Mrs. Stonor of Stonor, 
who was so obliging as to show us their new ^ chapel, 

^ This is a mistake ; the chapel had been restored, Stonor Chapel, 
together with East Hendred, Berkshire, and Hazlewood, Yorkshire, 
are the only three chapels in England that have never passed from the 
Church of Rome. 


1 80 1 a most elegant one, and a very fine painting on glass 
done by Egginton, a present from Mr. Blundell, her 
father. The altar fine marble, brought from France 
since the Revolution. 

July \^th. — Mr. Powys and Tom went to see the 
Annesleys at Coley,^ near Reading, which place they 
had taken to remove most of their family, as the 
scarlet fever was very bad in their village near Bletch- 
ingdon Park. I was glad to see Coley again, as 
'tis many years since our friends the Misses Thomp- 
son have been dead ; but we were rather surprised 
that one of the sisters. Lady Jennings, now living, 
and who sold the place, should have left all the 
family pictures just in the same places we remember 

July 2^rd. — Mr. Powys and myself set off for 
Canterbury, but first went to Mr. Shrimpton's in 

July 25/^. — Went to see the panorama, a view of 
Constantinople well worth seeing, and after to see an 
original portrait of Bonaparte at the battle of Mar- 
engo, taken from life by Barrois. He is represented 
giving orders to General Berthier at the moment of 
victory ; their two horses, natural size, in the back- 
ground held by a hussar. There was another full- 
length picture of him in London at that time, but 
thought not so good as this. 

Monday^ July 2jth. — Set off for Canterbury. . . . 

July 2i^st, — Went to Leigh Abbey, Mr. Barrets. 
The house, place, and owner all extremely well worth 

Augiist 2^d. — Mr. Powys and myself set off for 
Ramsgate. Dr. Wolsby had been so kind as to take 

^ Coley Park, now seat of Berkeley Monck, Esq. 


lodgings for us, the place was very full, and now much 1801 
more fashionable th^n Margate. Our lodgings were 
diminutive after the spacious rooms in the Deanery, 
the largest ten feet square only, for which we gave 
three guineas a week. Mr. Anson, for a house with 
a view of the sea, the largest in Ramsgate, gave 
eighteen guineas a week, and only five windows in 
the front. . . . 

August Jth. — I went with Miss Page in their 
landaulet to Margate, Kingsgate, and Broad Stairs. 
Opposite Margate was the shipi in which Lord Nelson 
had just come in from Boulogne, where he had de- 
stroyed ten gunboats, but not burnt the town, as had 
been reported, his Lordship saying it was never his 
intention to fight against women and children. The 
firing off Boulogne we heard very plain at Ramsgate 
that evening. He was said to be going from thence 
to do the same at Flushing, and took a great many 
men from Ramsgate and Margate to show them, as 
he had told them, some service. His Lordship did 
not come on shore, and sail'd the next day. 

Saturday, August ^th. — From the pier this even- 
ing we saw the fleet returning from the Baltic, about 
nine men-of-war. They did not stop in the Downs. 

August 22nd. — Went with Miss Page, and Miss 
Harrison, to Margate. We observed a hoy coming in 
so crowded that we really fear'd many of the pas- 
sengers must have tumbled out or the vessel upset 
as they were getting out • sometimes 200 people in 
one. The pier was full of people looking, and laugh- 
ing at the oddity of their disembarking. 

August 24M. — Returned to the Deanery, Canter- 
bury, for the race-week. 

» The Medusa, 



1 80 1 August 25M. — Went to the Cathedral at ten. 
Lord Camden, and the Bishop of Clogher, came to 
my brothers. Lord Darnley was steward of the races. 
A great deal of company ; public breakfasting every 
morning at twelve ; ordinaries for the gentlemen at 
two, as the race was after dinner, from which the 
company returned to dress for the balls, which began 
about seven. A play on the last day. Saturday no 

August 26th. — I attended Lord Camden, and a 
large party to the breakfast-rooms, and I am sure a 
very cheap elegance, as only one shilling each person. 
We dined at two, and I went in his Lordship's carriage 
to the race-ground. . . . 

August lytA. — In the evening Lord Camden, Mr. 
Powys, and myself went to the ball, which was very 
brilliant indeed. So many jewels I've not seen for 
a great while, and the ladies mostly dress'd in silver 
Canterbury muslins, which it seems are now in Lon- 
don called the Chambery, to sound, I suppose, more 
fashionable, though all manufactured by Callaway in 
this city. I think one hardly ever saw so many pretty 
women, Lady Darnley ^ one of the most beautiful. , . . 
Lord Camden danced the whole evening (as he told 
us on the Tuesday), with Lady Darnley, and vastly 
well indeed did both perform. 

Monday^ August 2^1 sL — We left Canterbury, lay at 
Rochester. We were surprised to see so many fields 
of canary-seed, but it seems Kent is the only county 
where it is sown. 

September i6th, — We dined at Mr. Howman's,* 

^ Elizabeth, wife of the fourth Earl, third daughter of Right Hon. 
William Brownlow. 

* The Rev. Arthur E. Howman, for fifty years Vicar of Shiplake, from 
1799 to 1848. 


minister of Shiplake, Mrs. Atkyns Wright, and Mrs. 1801 
Fanshawe there. 

October loth, — We dined at Lord Malmesbury's, 
Park Place. Invited to a turtle, sent them by Lord 
Lavington. We set down twenty-two. Lady Mintoi 
had just come from Vienna with her six children. 
After tea and coffee in one room cards, in the other 
dancing, Lady Minto's children had all learn'd at 
Vienna, and I never saw any dance equal to them in 
reels, waltzes, corsars, &c., &c. 

Sunday, November 29///. — The snow so deep no 
woman could get to church ; the Oxford mail stopped. 
The snow lasted till December 3rd, succeeded by 
great floods. 

November lolh. — Elizabeth (Mrs. Tom Powys), 
brought to bed of a son.^ 

January 2nd. — Snowed all day. The snow and 1802 
frost continued on and till January 19th, having begun 
on 23rd November. 

On January 23rd the little boy at Remenham 
christened, named Thomas Arthur. 

January 30M. — Went to Fawley Court, and saw 
Mrs. Freeman' for the first time since her fall, then 
two years ago. 

February ^rd. — Set off for Bath. 

February 23^^. — At the Upper Rooms, reopened 
this season on Tuesday, twenty-five tables. 

Tuesday^ February 2nd, — At the Upper Rooms, 
twenty-seven tables.* 

* Wife of first Earl Minto. 

' Thomas Arthur, afterwards Vicar of Medmenham, Berks. 
' This was Mrs. Strickland Freeman, not the dowager, Mrs. Free- 
man, who lived at Henley Park. 

* This shows the prevalence of cards then. Vide Anstey*s ** New 
Bath Guide," for the universal mania for gambling. 


1802 Returned home March 25th. 

April 25/^. — My dear Caroline (Cooper), brought 
to bed of her third son, Henry Gisborne. . . . 

August loth. — Mr. Powys and myself set out on 
our second journey into Staffordshire. Set out from 
Fawley at eight, got to Benson by ten, where we 
breakfasted, to Oxford at one, changed horses at 
Woodstock, and got to Chapel House by four, and to 
Stafford Bridge by nine, where we dined and lay, an 
excellent house for accommodations, tho* small, and 
the most reasonable in their charges I ever knew. 
Next morning set out early for Warwick, where we 
met Colonel Gregory, who had insisted that we should 
stay at least one night with them on our journey. We 
intended to see Warwick Castle. We were taken in 
at the porter's lodge, who informed us he was alway 
ordered by his Lordship to desire a note wrote by one 
of the company to request seeing the Castle. While 
this was taken to the house, the porter, a most respect- 
able old servant in the family livery, showed us into a 
room hung round with armour, &c., of Guy, Earl of 
Warwick. In the centre stands the famous porridge 
pot belonging to that hero. It's made of brass, and 
contains 102 gallons, and the porter informed us was 
three times filled with punch at the present Earl's 1 
coming of age. Warwick Castle I think a place as 
much worth seeing as any I ever was at. The family 
being there, could only see the ground -floor, on 
which are nine fine rooms. You go from the first 
to the last in a straight line, which measures 333 feet, 
and has a fine effect to the eye. The house is grandly 
furnished, many fine pictures, and numbers of ancient 
curiosities, a vast deal of old armour, &c., &c. Colonel 

* George, second Earl of Warwick. 



Gregory wish'd us to go to Kenilworth Castle, five 1802 
miles from Warwick, to see the inside of that famous 
ruin ; but as we knew this must make us late for Mrs. 
Gregory's dinner, we only stopped to take an outside 
view of the venerable pile, and then proceeded to the 
Colonel's seat called Stivishall Hall. . . . 

August 12th, — After breakfast we set out thro* 
Coventry, by Kenilworth to Lichfield, where we 
dined, and reached Hamstall by tea-time, finding all 
the family (Coopers), perfectly well. . . . We returned 
to Fawley on September 9th. . . . 

September 21st. — We all went to Reading to see 
the cheese fair, and were much entertain'd by the 
sight of such quantities of that useful commodity, and 
afterwards saw Astley's horses perform their wonders 
round a circus. We were in what was called the 
boxes, 2s. a seat ; there was a vast number of the 
neighbouring families there. 

December ^ist. — No frost or snow hardly this 
winter, but constant fogs, and rain almost daily. 

February ist. — Mr. Powys and myself set off for 1803 
our annual Bath tour. 

February StA. — At the Tuesday card assembly ; 
twenty-three tables. 

1 2tA. — We were at the cotillon, or fancy ball. 

February 24M. — Saw the panorama of London. 

25M. — Went to see the ** Invisible lady made 
visible," (a very foolish thing). 

In March, Mr. Dutton, brother to Lord Sher- 
bourne, married at Bath the celebrated beauty, 
Miss Honoria Gubbins. Settled on her in case 
of no children ;^50oo, and ;^30o pin-money, and 
;^i5,cxx) on younger children, if any. We were then 
at Bath. 


1803 Colonel Cotterel drove four cream-colour'd horses 
this year at Bath, which he had bought of the King, 
who met him one day, when his Majesty told him he 
was quite happy they were in such good hands. 

When the influenza was so violent this spring at 
Bath, Dr. Parry visited 1 20 patients in two days ; 
and Mr. Crook, the apothecary, only wish'd he could 
have a lease of this same influenza for eight years — 
he should not desire a better fortune. 

Oberne, the Bishop of Meath, preach 'd an excel- 
lent sermon at this season at Bath against card-parties, 
and concerts on Sunday evenings. His wife, Mrs. 
Oberne, went the day after to pay a morning visit to 
an old lady, who told her she was very angry with her 
husband, as she had just received twenty-eight cards 
of refusals to her next Sunday's party. ** Oh, how 
glad I am," says Mrs. Oberne, **to hear this." The 
lady bridled up, and replied, ** However, it shall not 
hinder my parties." Miss Wroughton declared she 
would always have her Sunday concerts, for all the 
bishops. This latter lady, formerly one of the first 
of the Bath beauties, was lately styled by a wit at 
that place, ** A proof print of former times." Mr. 
Whaley, a fine travelled young clergyman, a widower, 
who has spent already two good fortunes, a great 
taste for virtu, was married this year, after a three 
weeks' courtship, to a Miss Heathcote, aged sixty, 
with a fortune of fourscore thousand pounds in her 
own power. She had the finest dresses made for the 
occasion I ever heard of, her gowns laced to the 
highest expense of fashion, and all jewels that was 
possible. She wore round her neck a necklace with 
medallions of the twelve Caesars, on which the follow- 
ing lines were made : — 


** No longer at thy virgin state repine, 1 803 

Twelve Caesars now upon thy breast recline. 

O happy she 1 " 

She has an elegant house in the Crescent, and he 
has one in St. James' Square, Bath, which, tho' most 
elegantly furnished, after he returned from Paris, find- 
ing paper-hangings were there called vulgar, imme- 
diately took all down and hung all with satins. 

We returned to Fawley, April 20th. 

June 13M. — The christening of Tom s little Cathe- 
rine Jane. We dined at Remenham. 

Atigust 2nd. — Mr. Powys and I set out for our 
son Cooper's in Staffordshire, and reached Hamstall 
on the 3rd about six. Had the inexpressible joy to 
see Cooper, Caroline, and their six dear children in 
perfect health. 

August 5/ A. — Our wedding-day. We had been 
married now forty-one years, and I believe I may 
most sincerely say, as perfectly happy as 'tis possible 
to be. 

August lotk. — A party of eight we started, some 
driving, some riding, at 7.30 a.m., to Derby. We 
got to Tutbury, where we breakfasted ; 'tis five miles 
from Bourton on the south bank of the river Dove. 
We walk'd up to the fine old ruin of the castle, where 
Mary, Queen of Scots, had formerly been a prisoner. 
The views from thence are remarkably picturesque. 
The castle is about seven hundred years old. The 
Saxon arch gateway into the church^ is very fine. 
In 1568, during the time of the Duke of Norfolk's 
intrigue in the reign of Elizabeth, Mary, Queen of 
Scots, was removed hither from Bolton Castle, a 
house of Lord Scrope's, on the borders of Yorkshire. 

* Once the Priory Church. 



1803 She was seventeen years in different confinements. 
From the walls of Tutbury Castle, which has so long 
echoed the sighs of the unfortunate queen, she was 
removed in 1586 to Chartley, and from thence in 
September 1586 to Fotheringay Castle in Northamp- 
tonshire. The west end of Tutbury Church, notwith- 
tanding the ravages that have been made in this 
fine old fabric, still exhibits a specimen of Saxon 
architecture more rich and beautiful than any of the 
kind in this island. 

We set off for Derby about ten, got there to 
dinner, walked about the town, which may be called 
a good one. Next morning we went to the celebrated 
china manufactory, where we all purchased many 
articles ; from thence to view the silk-mills, which 
seems the most curious invention that can be. Mr. 
John Lombe had a patent to bring this contrivance 
to England from Italy. Before you enter the manu- 
factory you pass an immense wheel ; ^ by that one 
99,947 other wheels are all turn'd. There are three 
sorts of silk from China and Italy. Near three hundred 
little girls are employ 'd in tying knots as the silk 
breaks, and numbers of boys. From thence we went 
to the Derbyshire spar manufactory. There, we all 
made many purchases. We returned to the *' George*' 
inn, and took some refreshment before setting out 
for Burton. This town is a tolerable one, a bridge 
there very remarkable for its length. We were much 
disappointed with the famous Burton ale, and all of 
us agreed we had never tasted worse. 

August 2^th. — We went to see Beau Desert, the 
Earl of Uxbridge s, a large old white house, situated 

* This wheel, twenty-three feet in circumference, was turned by water 
from the river Dcrwent. 


on a vast eminence, commanding a most beautiful 1803 
prospect. *Tis a great pity thai now none of the 
family reside there ; 'tis now almost unfurnished, and 
looks desolate. In one fine room they had put the 
present fashionable large window - frames, and the 
largest panes of plate-glass I had ever seen, which 
cost five guineas a pane. 

August 2i^st. — Returned to Fawley. . . . 

November ^th. — We were much alarm'd by fire at 
Fawley Court, which broke out in the morn in the 
carpenter s shops erected for the repairs now doing 
there. Four fine horses were smothered, three or 
four burnt, stables, and the shop, many of the new 
mahogany window-frames, and the plate-glass of them 
broke. The family were away. Fortunately it did 
not reach the house, though it did considerable 
damage. . . . 

December 2pth. — A ball and supper at Lord Malmes- 
bury s. Park Place. The company about sixty-four. 
There by half-past seven. Supped at twelve. Got 
home before four in the morning. 

January \st, 1804. — The first day for three weeks 1804 
without rain. 

January i2tk. — Mr. Powys and myself set out on 
our annual Bath excursion. 

January 27 ih, — I was at the ladies' Catch Club. 
Mrs. Badderley was so obliging as to get me a ticket, 
a difficult thing to get About three hundred and 
seventy-two, mostly ladies. No supper, but cake, ices, 
and jellies carried round between the acts. 

February 6iL — At the dress-ball, Upper Rooms. 
Took my god-daughter, Charlotte Powney. The 
Duke and Duchess of Devonshire and family, and 
the French General Boger, who dined at her Grace's 


1804 most days. He was permitted to come to Bath, but 
not London. We wondered he had been allowed to 
come to such a public place as that, but he pleaded 
his health. Major and Mrs. Plunket there. His lady, 
the famous novel-writer. Miss Gumming, an extremely 
plain woman. . . . 

March iStk. — Home to Fawley. 

November 2nd. — The Dean, Mr. Powys, and 
myself went to Mr. King s at Wycombe. Mr. King- 
took us to see Lord Carrington's,^ a fine old place, 
just out of the town. It is now being fitted up by 
Wyatt in the ancient style, as such places should be, 
and not modernised. Nothing can be more magni- 
ficent, and *tis supposed it will cost at least ;^50,ooo. 
Nothing could be more polite than my Lord, and her 
Ladyship. Their family consists of girls, and only 
one son, who is the youngest. 

November \oth. — I went to Mr. Wests, but they 
were gone to London to thank the King for his visit 
to Culham Court the week before. 

November 26 th. — Louisa (Powys), and myself went 
to Mr. West s, and they gave us a full account of the 
late royal visit — the King, Queen, some of the prin- 
cesses, five gentlemen, thirty-two horses, and numbers 
of servants ; but they were prepared for all by Lady 
Matilda Wynyard, who was staying at Culham Court ; 
indeed, they had fix d the week before, but put it off, 
which was rather inconvenient ; but they had a dinner 
ready at one, at which hour his Majesty generally 
dines. They seemed much pleased with the place 
and their reception ; would have all the children * in the 

* Wycombe Abbey. 

* The late Miss West remembered the good-natured King playing 
with her half-brothers, with his riding-whip, on the door-steps. 


room with them the whole time ; and when they went 1 804 
over the apartments, the King, who always goes into 
every room, popped into one where the maid was 
dressing out the flowers, &c. She started up, and 
was greatly alarmed, but his Majesty laughed, and 
said to her, ** Don't be frightened ; I won't steal any 
one thing." ^ 

Jantmry \2th, 1805. — Mr. Powys and myself went 1805 
to Bath. 

January 2^th. — The cotillon ball. 

January 28M. — The dress ball, Upper Rooms, 
immensely crowded at ten ; but the number of card- 
parties quite spoil the balls, as 'tis fashionaable to 
attend five or six before you go to the room. It was 
endeavoured to alter these hours, but fortunately for the 
old people, and those who drink the waters, it was not 
permitted, and at eleven,^ if in the middle of a dance, 
the music stops. But as I suppose 'tis reckoned vulgar 
to come early, one sees nothing of the dancing or 
company for the crowds. The rooms are not half so 
agreeable as they were some years ago, when the late 
London hours were not thought of ; and how prejudi- 
cial must they be to the health of all, is very visible 
in the young as well as in the old. Formerly youth 
was seldom ill ; now, from thin clothing and late hours, 
you hardly see a young lady in good health, or not 
complaining of rheumatism, as much as us old ones ! 

* Mr. West had hot rolls brought from Gunter, wrapped in flannel, 
by relays of horsemen ! The King said, *' Ah ! Gunter, Gunter ! I am 
glad you deal with Gunter, West : nobody like Gunter ! " The King 
wiped his shoes carefully on entering, and on Mr. West telling him not 
to mind, said, ** No, West, I am not going to carry dirt into any man's 

' This was introduced by '* Beau Nash," when the inexorable master 
of the ceremonies at Bath. 


1805 Sixteen thousand strangers at Bath in the season 


March ^th. — Our grandson, Warren Cooper, born, 


March 29M. — Returned from Bath. 

May 2()th. — Mr. Powys and myself set out for 
London. Got to Mrs. Shrimptons, Bedford Square, 
at half-past four. 

Ju7ie gth. — I have seen the panoramas, the Rock 
of Gibraltar, the Bay of Naples, and the view of 
Edinburgh, all particularly pleasing. 

June loth. — Mr. and Mrs. Cox came to dinner. 
He is the author of ** Miscellaneous Poetry,** a very 
entertaining book. I copied the following from it : — 

" From their coasts by the gales should our navy be toss'dy 
And in spite of our tars should our Channel be cross'd. 
Frenchmen never our dear native land shall explore, 
If not sunk in the sea they shall die on the shore. 
Then let Nelson and Sydney ^ new triumphs prepare 
And the Corsican tyrant may come if he dare ! " 

June 14/// was the first day of Term, when all 
the judges, counsellors, &c.. &c., came to breakfast 
with the Chancellor in Bedford Square, a few doors 
from Mrs. Shrimpton's. There were fifty-one car- 
riages, and on their return the Chancellor's (Lord 
Eldon's*), state-coach, with long-tailed horses, and 
two more of his own coaches followed the state one, 
in which he went to Westminster Hall. Unfortunately 
it was a very wet day. The seventeenth carriage 
was the state one. 

June 17th. — The Dean came from Windsor to 
breakfast with us. We all went to Laurence's, the 

* Sir William Sidney Smith, a distinguished admiral. 
' Lord Eldon became Lord Chancellor in 1801. 


June i8i/i. — The Dean went to the Archbishop 1805 
of Canterbury's at Lambeth to stay one night on his 
way to Canterbury. Mr. Powys and myself set out 
for Fawley. 

August isL — I rode my donkey for the first time, 
which Mr. Powys had just bought me. It cost three 
guineas and a half. 

August 12th. — Mr. Powys and myself set off" for 
our son Cooper s, in Staffordshire. We hired a post- 
chaise for the time at a guinea a week, of Hicks, 
coachmaker in the Fair Mile.^ 

August 14M. — We went out most mornings and 
evenings in the two donkey-chaises — very clever 
vehicles indeed. Caroline drove one, and little Ed- 
ward was so pleased at being postillion to grand- 
mamma, that, though I sometimes drove myself, he 
most days rode my donkey, the carriages only holding 
one person each. 

• Monday the 26th had been for some time fixed 
on for us to go to Matlock and Dove Dale. We 
set out a party of seven ; we went through Blithbury 
and Abbots Bromley. We got to the Rev. Mr. 
Stubbs' at Uttoxeter by half-past one, who asked us 
to dine with him. We went to see the church, rather 
an extraordinary one, very ancient, and the pews so 
oddly managed * as three or four to go through each 
other, and so very narrow that, if those belonging to 
the outward ones happen to come first, without they 
are the most slender persons, it's impossible to pass 
each other. Caroline and myself, who are not so, 

* At Henley-on-Thames. 

'^ This was the case at Shiplake Church, Oxon, before the restoration 
of 1870. The seats in the first pews in the chancel had to be lifted up^ 
to admit persons to the seats behind. 


1 80s could not help laughing, and saying it was lucky we 
did not belong to this church. . . . We set out from 
Mr. Stubbs' after dinner. We got to Ashbourne 
early enough to walk about before supper. 'Tis a 
very pretty town. We lay there, and set out for 
Dove Dale early on Tuesday, and went through the 
most romantic and beautiful road, call'd the ** Via 
Gellia," lately made through his own grounds by a 
Mr. Gell. In the midst of this woody scenery at a 
distance rises a grand solitary rock, the characteristic 
feature of this vale, known by the name of Dove Dale 
Church, It consists of a large face of rock, with two 
or three spiry heads, and one very large one. The 
valley of Dove Dale is very narrow at the bottom, 
consisting of little more than the channel of the Dove, 
which is a considerable stream, and a footpath along 
the banks. I mentioned having gone through **Via 
Gellia," but I made a mistake ; it was after we left 
Dove Dale, on our way back to Ashbourne, where 
we dined, and got to Matlock in the evening, to the 
Old Bath Hotel, still reckoned the best. When I 
was there in 1757, breakfast was at eight, dinner at 
two ; now dinner at four and supper at half-past 
nine ; and what is pleasanter, you have your tea and 
breakfast with your own party only, at what time 
you like. There is generally dancing after supper, 
the ball and dinner rooms both very handsome and 
large. The view from the front of the hotel is quite 
beyond description. . . . Matlock, like all other water- 
ing-places at this period, is expensive living ; they 
charge so much each person for breakfast, dinner^ tea^ 
and supper. The bed-chambers small, but very neat ; 
each door labelled 8s. a week, and numbered. Ours 
was 34. 


Wednesday, li^th. — We set off to walk all round the 1 805 
environs of Matlock ; ascended the rock call'd Mat- 
lock, 1 20 yards high ; on each side a row of lofty elms, 
call'd the ** Lover s Walk/* We crossed the river 
Derwent in a boat kept for that purpose, and ascended 
by a winding path up the rocks to the finest natural 
terrace, caird the Hay Rock, from whence you have 
a perpendicular view down a vast precipice to the 
river. . . . 

August 29M. — We set out at seven o'clock from 
Matlock to breakfast at Derby. Within three miles 
of that town we passed Kedleston, Lord Scarsdale's. 
We walk'd about the town, purchasing spar, china, 
&c. ; re-started to Hamstall, which we reached by nine. 

September. — Mr. Powys and myself left Hamstall, 
to return to Fawley. A dismal parting as usual. 

October iStA. — Tom,^ who was now the Deans 
curate, did the whole duty. 

October 23^^. — Our daughter, Louisa Powys of 
Hard wick, was brought to bed of a girl. Our seven- 
teenth grandchild. 

December jth, — Mr. Powys and myself went to 
the play at Henley, bespoke by Lady Elizabeth Fane. 
A very full house. Sheridan's play of '* The Rivals," 
an excellent one, and vastly well performed. One of 
their actors, Mr. William Penley, is as capital a per- 
former as any I've seen in London or Bath. The 
theatre, a new one, a very nice one indeed. 

December 12th. — It snow'd in the night, and con- 
tinued all day. Mrs. Atkyns Wright had bespoke a 
play, and we were engaged to dine at Mr. Coventry's. 
We had great difficulty in getting down our hill. How- 

* Tom succeeded his uncle, Dean Powys, as Rector of Fawley in 18 10, 
presented by Strickland Freeman, Esq. 


1805 ever, got safe to Henley; dined at Mr. Coventry's. 
We all went to the theatre at half-past six, and, despite 
of the weather, Mrs. Atkyns Wright had a full house. 
The plays, ** The Way to get Married," and •' Of Age, 

1806 January j^rd, 1806. — First Henley assembly. A 
very good one — twenty couples. 

Thursday y January i6th. — Mr. Powys and myself 
set off for Bath about nine ; took our coach to the 
" Black Bear," Reading, from thence in post-chaise. 

January ^^rd. — Thursday, to the inexpressible 
loss of the nation, died Mr. Pitt, only forty-seven years 
of age. 'Tis impossible to say how much he seemed 
to be regretted by every one we met. 

January ijth. — At the dress ball, Mr. King was 
now master of the ceremonies at the Upper Room, 
as Tyson had given it up. 

February T^rd, — Cotillon ball. 

February 22nd. — At the play, **The School for 
Friends." The first time I had seen the new theatre ; 
a very fine one. 

March 6th. — At the play (Mrs. Didier's benefit), 
** To Marry or not to Marry," and the farce "A Tale 
of Mystery." 

March 2gtL — At the play, to see Cooke perform 
Sir Pertinax MacSycophant in "The Man of the 
World," written by the late Charles Macklin, and the 
pantomime of ** Harlequin ^sop, or Hymen's Gift.'* 

April \st. — We left Bath. The illness now every- 
where term'd **the influenza" very prevalent. Mr. 
Powys very ill, with such a lowness and debility. 

April i6th. — The christening^ of little Emily at 

^ Two grandchildren, Emily, Philip Powys s child, and Augusta, 
Thomas Powys's. 


Hardwick. I was unluckily too ill to go, as I was 1806 
one of the godmothers. 

April 2iOth. — We all went to Remenham, to the 
christening of little Augusta Powys. . . . 

June ijth. — We went to the town-hall, Henley, 
to hear Mr. Scobel, the schoolmaster's, scholars re- 
hearse, which they did vastly well. The hall was 
immensely crowded by all the neighbourhood, and 
was very elegantly ornamented all round with wreaths 
of roses, &c. . . . 

October 24M. — Our dear old friend, Mrs. Freeman, 
of Henley Park, died, after a most lingering illness. 

October jpth. — On this day our ever to be la- 
mented friend, Mrs. Freeman, was buried in the family 
mausoleum, FAwley Church. The Dean performed 
the ceremony ; a great concourse of people. 

January 12th. — Mr. Powys and myself set out for 1807 

January lyth. — Master Betty ^ acted for his last 
night at Bath, and though we had no very great desire 
to see him, thought it would be foolish to lose the op- 
portunity. He acted in the play of **Mahomet," and was 
just the thing we had expected ; for tho' he certainly acts 
well, yet his youth and manner could never make one 
suppose him the character he represents, and his voice 
now is quite horrid. The company at Bath did not 
seem the least sorry at his departure, and the actors, 
as one may suppose, were much rejoiced. Some years 
hence I dare say he will be an excellent performer. 

February 2nd, — A morning subscription concert, 
for the benefit of Miss Randal, at the New Room, 

* Called the " Young Roscius." A portrait of him exists in the students* 
room, Reading Free Library ; died young. His real name was W. R. 
Grossmith ; bom in Reading, Berks. 


1807 York Hotel. She is only six years old, and is indeed 
a most wonderful little creature ; plays on the piano 
in a most wonderful manner, and has a sweet voice ; 
she is accompanied on the harp by her blind father, 
and by her uncle, Mr. Parry, on the flageolet. It was 
a pleasing sight to see the little performer lifted on 
the platform by her uncle, and as she walk'd up the 
room she was spoken to by all she pass'd near, and 
met with great applause. Before she was three years 
old she could play three tunes. 

February ^^d. — Was at the procession of Mr. 
Walter Long's burial, which went from his house in 
Gay Street to be buried at his estate at Wrexham,^ 
Wiltshire. The cavalcade was very magnificent First, 
seven men on horseback, then men with plumes of 
feathers, his own mourning chaise and four, the hearse 
and six. Lord Hood's coach and six, and post-chaise 
and six, six chaises and pair, and the concourse of 
people that follow'd were not to be numbered. He 
was ninety-six years of age, and died worth ;^8cx),C)00, 
which he left to his sister, then ninety-one, at her 
death to his nephew, John Long, and at John's death 
to a brother of Mr. John's, and at his death to a Mr. 
Jones. He left above fifty hundred pounds legacies. 

February 14///. — I went to the play ** Adrian and 
Orilla," and the ** Forty Thieves." 

March \^th. — The Bishop of Feme preach'd at 
Queen's Square, a most excellent sermon ; indeed he 
is a most amiable man, and his lady equally so. We 
could not help feeling for what they suffered in Ire- 
land — their house torn down, their furniture taken, 

1 Should be Wraxall Manor, once an abbey ; has been in the Long 
family since 1426. Mr. Long was a great admirer of Miss Linley, but 
she married R. B. Sheridan instead. 


and every place ransacked, his loss above ;^io,ocx:), by 1807 
the Irish rebels ; and what must have caus d them in- 
finite distress, most of their own servants were con- 
cerned in the whole. Poor Mrs. Clever's health was 
so much hurt, and she still feels it so much, that she 
fears she shall never have fortitude to return to his 
bishopric in Ireland. 

April 2nd, — Set out for Fawley ; weather intensely 

July i^th, — Cooper, Caroline, their eight children, 
Miss Morse the governess, and two servants came 
from Staffordshire to Hard wick. 

July ^isl. — Mr. Powys and myself went to Hard- 
wick to see the Coopers ; the children in high spirits 
with their five Hard wick cousins, so only saw thir- 
teen^ together, as Tom's were not there. The Coopers 
came to us afterwards. 

August 15///. — I drove to Mrs. Innes's^ in my 
donkey-chaise, and its being quite a new carriage in 
this part of the world, I gained the attention of every 
one, and children foUow'd me all over the town. 

September i6th. — We all went to Tom's at Re- 
menham to dinner, and to the christening of their last 
child, Bransby William Powys. 

October 1st. — Our dear Caroline Cooper and chil- 
dren set off for Staffordshire. 

December 2nd. — Staying at Hardwick ; the gentle- 
men went a shooting, and had great sport,' killed six 
woodcocks, four rabbits, one hare, but missed a shot 
at a fine cock-pheasant. 

' Mr. and Mrs. Powys had eighteen grandchildren at that period. 
^ Mrs. Innes lived at " Paradise House," Henley. 
^ What would the battue-shooter of the present day think of this bag 
for a party of four men ? 


1807 December lyih. — To a play at Henley, bespoke 
by Lady Stapleton, " Laugh when you can," and the 
** Devil to Pay." A very full house ; all the neigh- 
bouring families there. 

December 22nd, — The play at Henley bespoke 
by Mrs. Atkyns Wright, ** Town and Country," by 
Morton, and **Blue Beard." A very full house, the' 
a great fog and no 7noon. 

December ^is^. — Another play, bespoke by Miss 
Grote (of Badgemore), ** How to Grow Rich," and 
** Mother Goose." 

1808 January \2ith, 1808. — Mr. Powys and myself set 
off for Bath. . . . 

March ()th. — I went to Ranzini s concert to hear 
Madame Catalani,^ but was disappointed with numbers, 
as she came from the opera in London all night, 
caught a violent cold and sore throat ; above a thousand 
had been in the concert-room hours, some they said 
by three o clock ; we did not go till six, and had not 
a very good seat. At eight, when it was to begin, 
Ranzini came on the platform to say how shock*d 
Madame Catalani was at disappointing the company, 
but she was really too ill to sing the songs given out, 
but she would try some others. We began to fear a 
riot, as some hisses began. However, Madame came, 
and I daresay did what she was able, but was quite 
unable to sing, and retired with many apologies. The 
next morning handbills were given out that she could 
not sing that night as she had intended, as there was 
to have been two, but that she would come down next 
Wednesday to Ranzini s concert, and to those who 
had been on the evening before she would sing on 

^ Angelica Catalani, bom 1782, made her d^but on the stage 1802, 
came to England in 1806. 


the next Thursday morning, so every one seem'd 1S08 
satisfied, till the Tuesday morning following, when 
bills were again circulated that she was too ill to come 
down ; so here it finally ended, except to poor Ranzini, 
who behaved uncommonly generous, desiring every 
one who was at the first concert, or those who had 
tickets for the second, to call at the rooms, where each 
would be returned their half-guinea. 

March loth. — At the cotillon ball, the Lower 
Rooms, a remarkably good one. A French emigrant 
who was permitted to be at Bath was reckoned a re- 
markable good dancer, and certainly was so. He had 
not been latterly, as some gentleman had said one 
night, *' No wonder he dances fine, when he was a 
dancing-master," but they say that was only a joke. 

April yth. — The Coopers, Mr. Powys, and myself 
went by nine o'clock to see Mr. Freeman * ride in his 
riding-house, and very entertaining it was. He rode 
six different horses, and Miss Caroline Strickland rode 
two of them. 

August 2nd. — We set out for Hamstall, Stafford- 

August ^th. — Our wedding-day, the forty-sixth; 
married 1762. 

October 29M. — The Dean was taken with a fit of 
the gout. 

December 2^1 St. — Mr. ScobeP did duty. I was too 
ill to venture out. 

And here, alas ! the facile, agreeable pen of Mrs. 
Powys ceased, or, at any rate, none of her great- 

* Strickland Freeman of Fawley Court, Bucks, was a great horseman ; 
he wrote a book upon training and breaking horses. Caroline Strickland 
was his niece. 

' Master of the Royal Grammar School, Henley-on-Thames. 


grandchildren possess any further diaries. The ab- 
ruptness seems almost painful to the reader, the last 
entry, as we see, refers to her being ill ; possibly that 
prevented her resuming her able pen for a while, but 
if she did write any more daily entries, they are lost. 
Hitherto her life may be said to have been free from 
much trouble, but a frightful loss was in store for her, 
for on April 12, 1809, her husband died suddenly and 
most unexpectedly. What that blow must have been 
to her tender heart, those who have read her words as 
to her nearly forty-six years of wedded happiness can 
understand. Mr. Powys was laid to rest on April 20 
in the family burial-place at Whitchurch, Oxon. His 
age was seventy-five. 

This was not the end of her misfortunes, for 
the Dean, **her brother," as she always affectionately 
named him, died on October 7, whilst in residence at 
Canterbury, and was buried there. Presumably Mrs. 
Powys was with him till then. She now retired to 
Henley to live in a house in New Street, on the north 
side next the river, now occupied by Miss Latter. 
Very possibly it was the same house as her mother, 
Mrs. Girle, had lived in for some years till she died in 
1 80 1, probably having a lease of it, but this is not 
certain. The house is a large solid red brick mansion 
with gabled roof, of the style of Queen Anne, but a 
portion appears to be of older date. Many of the 
rooms are or have been panelled ; the drawing-room 
at the back, from its greater loftiness and more modern 
style, was built more recently, possibly for herself or 
her mother. 

At the back is a charming old walled garden, in 
the centre of which stands a magnificent Ailanthus 
Glandulosa, or "Tree of the Gods." Before the 


modern boat-houses were built by the river, all the 
bedroom windows at the back commanded a fine 
view of the entire regatta course, now unfortunately 
blocked out. From the street front of the house a 
view of the river to the bridge is obtained. As in 
old days the broad- wheeled waggons stood, and the 
cheese fair was held, at the wharf at the bottom 
of the street, we can fancy Mrs. Powys's lively interest 
in it all. 

The whole house is very quaint, with little steps 
up and down, uneven floors in some rooms, and hosts 
of delightful old cupboards ; several very large bed- 

In this same house Bishop Woodford, of Ely, was 
born in 1820. His mother was an Appleton, whose 
family lived there after Mrs. Powys left. New Street 
is new only in name, as it is at least 5CX) years old ! 

Mr. Strickland Freeman presented the living of 
Fawley, now vacant, t8 the Rev. Thomas Powys, 
son of our Mrs. Powys, and nephew of the Dean, 
and he was inducted April 6, 1810. As has been 
stated, he married in 1799 Miss Elizabeth Palgrave. 
At this time he was the father of six children, to 
which three more were added at a birth in the fol- 
lowing May! One trusts the birth of the triplets 
may have made a fresh interest in Mrs. Powys's now 
saddened life. 

The only letter of her writing existent, is the 
following, addressed to her daughter-in-law, Mrs. 
Philip Lybbe Powys of Hardwick : — 

" Henley, 
17/A April 181 2. 

" Mv DEAR Louisa, — Give me leave most sincerely 
to congratulate you on your late legacy, and believe 

2 A 



me no one feels more pleasure in it than myself. I 
fear I shall hardly be able to write legible, as I've 
had such a fall I can hardly use my right arm, as 
unfortunately I fell on that shoulder, and 'tis now in 
constant pain, and I suppose the rheumatism is settled 
there. I hope to hear you are all well, to whom joyn 
in love, and believe me. — Your ever affectionate 

** Caroline Powvs." 

Yet one more peep at her before the veil drops, 
in an extract from a letter from Mrs. Elizabeth 
Powney to her. 

Mrs. Girle, Mrs. Powys s mother, had a half-sister, 
who married first a Mr. Phelp, by whom she had a 
daughter, married to the Marquis de la Peire. After 
the death of Mr. Phelp, Mrs. Phelp remarried a Mr. 
Floyer. A daughter by this second marriage married 
Pennystone Powney, of Ives Place, Berks, on De- 
cember 20, 1776. This lady Writes the following, and 
sends it by her son : — 

"Ives Codge, 

November i, 18 15. 

** My dearest Caroline, — I cannot let the oppor- 
tunity slip of my dear Richard s going into Berkshire 
without sending you a few lines to know how you 
are, as Charlotte and myself frequently write but can 
get no answer, tho' I do sometimes hear of you from 
Madame de la Peire — however, not that lately. My 
son has promised if he possibly can, to leave this 
himself on his way through Henley, and see you. 
Me is going to Maidenhead on business with Mr. 
Payne. ... I hope you will be able to see my dear 
Richard. He is truly a most affectionate child, like 


all yours, who I hope are well? Pray my kindest 
regards to all of them. Mr. Henry Powys,* your 
grandson, called on me one day at Bath. I was 
extremely sorry when I came home to find his card 
only. . . . If it is irksome to you to write, tell him 
[her son], all you wish to say, and he will write to 
me from Maidenhead. . . . 

** Elizabeth Powney." 

On August 17, 18 1 7, the Rev. Thomas Powys 
died at Fawley Rectory, leaving a widow and eleven 
children, the eldest not quite seventeen. Our Mrs. 
Powys appears to have gone to comfort and help her 
daughter-in-law in her affliction, and she did not long 
survive this fresh blow, but died at Fawley Rectory, 
and was buried at Whitchurch by the Rev. G. Hunt, 
in her husband's grave, on November 7th in the same 
year, 181 7, aged seventy-nine years. 

Mrs. Powys from her parents had been a con- 
siderable heiress, owning property at Beenham,' 
Berks, from her father (Mr. Girle) ; a house in Lin- 
coln's Inn Fields which he built, and which we find 
in her note -books they took up residence in on 
September 14, 1754; from her mother she owned 
one-third of an estate at Lulsley, Worcestershire, 
besides considerable sums in the public funds in- 
herited from both parents. That she was an excel- 
lent wife and mother, an affectionate friend, and 
excellent mistress, is easily perceived by her diaries. 
Many are the notices of old servants, too numerous 
to insert here, with this exception : — ** Sarah Lovejoy, 


Henry Philip, eldest son of Philip Lybbe Powys of Hardwick. 
' Beenham tiUies were purchased by Sir Charles Rich, of Mr. Powys 
of Hardwick in 1802. 


died May 1778, after a long illness; nursed all my 
four children ; a most diligent, faithful servant." 

A word or two must be recorded of the career of 
Dean Powys, her beloved brother-in-law, at whose 
house the last twenty-five years of her life had 
been spent. Thomas Powys was bom at Hardwick, 
September 25, 1736; he was christened on St. 
Luke s day ; godfathers, Thomas Powys of Lilford 
and his uncle Ambrose Powys ; godmother, his aunt 
Anne Powys. What school he went to is unknown. 
It is possible he had a tutor at home. In 1753, when 
he was in his seventeenth year, he matriculated at 
St. John's College, Oxford, took his B.A. degree in 
1757, M.A. 1760. He took orders, and was ordained 
priest, February 15, 1761, and in May following his 
relation Thomas Powys, of Berwick, gave him the 
living of Munslow, Salop. He also became chaplain 
to John, Lord Montagu. October 30, 1762, he was 
made Rector of Fawley, Bucks, by presentation of 
Sambrook Freeman, Esq. of Fawley Court. On May 
18, 1769, made Rector of Silchester, Hants, by pre- 
sentation of Lord Camden, then Lord Chancellor, the 
living having lapsed to the Crown by Dr. Shipley's 
(the former Rectors), promotion to the Bishopric of 
Llandaff. Lord Camden procured Mr. Powys a 
prebendal stall at Hereford on December 5, 1769, 
vacant by promotion of Dr. Bazzington to a bishopric. 
On April 24, 1779, Lord Thurlow, then Chancellor, 
made him a Prebendary of Bristol. In November 
1 78 1 Mr. Powys became Chaplain to the King. 
March 1795 he was appointed first Chaplain to Lord 
Camden, then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland ; in Decem- 
ber of same year he became Doctor of Divinity, and 
Lord Camden offered him the Bishopric of Killala, 


which he refused. August 25, 1796, on the death of 
Dr. Sheppard, he was installed Canon of Windsor. 
May 26, 1797, through Mr. Pitt he was made Dean 
of Canterbury, his predecessor, Dr. Cornwall, going to 
the See of Bristol. Dean Powys died at Canterbury, 
October 7, 1809, aged seventy-three, and was buried 
there. He was a most genial, able man, a great 
favourite in society, and had a remarkable talent for 
rhyming. Many of his poems are existent in the 
family ; amongst them two odes to his favourite 
friend, General Conway, of Park Place, Berks. 


.J. J. . 



NOTE I.— (Page 103.) 

List of plate, &c., piteously described by Mr. Richard Lybbe as 
"taken awaie," by the Parliamentary troops during the Civil War 
from Hard wick House, Oxon. 

On great basin and ewer, worth -29 

On deep bason 9 

A pair of great flagons 28 

Two double gilt salts with covers, at -24 

On chafing dish, at 8 

On cream bole, at 6 

Three thick boles, parcel gilt with a couver 26 

On great gilt bole 7 

A little gilt bole with couver .3 

On gilt fruit dish 4 

On little sugar dish 2 

A gilt bole with mother of pearle • • 3 

On silver tankard 7 

On little gilt salt o 

Two dozen silver spoons, and four gilt spoons, 

and two silver forks . . . .24 

Beside this, money, and a bed with velvet hangings is mentioned 
as taken, the whole valued about ;^8oo then, which, with the depre- 
ciation of coin in these days, would now be worth much more. 


















NOTE II.— (Page 106.) 

Elizabeth Lybbe, who married J. Merrick, M.D., of Reading, 
and was mother of James Merrick, poet and author, left an in- 
teresting note about Dame Alice Lisle, of Moyles Court, Hants, 

who was condemned to death by the infamous Judge Jeffreys for 


378 NOTES 

sheltering and hiding two fugitives, a divine and a lawyer, from the 
field of Sedgemoor on the evening of July 28, 1685. 

Lady Lisle was the widow of John Lisle, who sat in the Long 
Parliament and in the High Court of Justice, was made a peer by 
Cromwell in 1658, therefore not in favour with the Stuart line. 
Dame Alice, of a kindly heart, is said to have sheltered Ro3ralists, 
as well as Roundheads, in their need. She was three times acquitted 
by the jury, yet condemned, and executed on September 2, 1685, 
at Winchester, and lies buried at Ellingham, near her home, Moyles 

This is the note of Elizabeth Lybbe, whose mother was Sophia 
Tipping, daughter of Sir Thomas Tipping, married to Richard 
Lybbe, of Hardwick House, Oxon : — 

" Lady Tipping, my grandfather's wife, was sister and co-heiress 
with Alice, wife of Lord de Lisle ; her title I think the Government 
acknowledge. The severe sentence of taking off her head was pro- 
nounced on account of her suffering Hix, a traitor, to take shelter in 
her house, which her woman discovered. My aunt Lisle was much 
older than my grandmother, and from age and a quiet conscience, 
slept at her trial, as she did the night before she suffered, when my 
pious aunt Tipping slept with her. 

"The day of her execution was September 2, 1685. She had 
many daughters, but one son, John, who left his estate to L'Isle, 
Esquire, of Crooks Eason, Hants. 

"My grandmother (Lady Tipping), was a most remarkable 
woman for strict piety, sedateness of temper, and good conduct; 
my grandfather leaving it much to her care to manage the family. 
They had sixteen children, six sons only." 

Dame Lisle was over seventy years of age when she was executed. 
Her mother was Lady Beckonshaw, daughter of William Bond, of a 
well-known Dorset family of the Isle of Purbeck. 

NOTE IIL— (Page 117.) 


In an old note-book of Mrs. Powys's is a list of the characters 
depicted in " Chrysal, or the Adventures of a Guinea," which was 
published in 177 1. Of late days it has been sometimes denied 
that the description of "The Monastery" in volume iil page 231. 
of "Chrysal," was an account of the pranks of the latter-day 

NOTES 379 

Franciscans, of Medmenham Abbey; by this list it will be seen 
that it was known to be, by a member of society who lived in the 
actual days of the existence of the sham monks, and other charac- 
ters described, and who knew personally some of the people in 
this list. 

Real Characters in " ChrysaV^ 

Volume I., Page 79. — Lord Anson. 

„ 85. — Sir Edward Faulkner. 
„ 98. — Mr. Pitt (afterwards Ix)rd Chatham), 
discovers cock's horns to be sham. 
„ „ 100. — Lord Chesterfield. 

„ „ 104. — Lord Howe. 

116, 117. — Dr. HilL 
141. — Mother Douglas. 
„ II 2 1 1. — Wilkes. 

Volume II., Page 24. — Duchess of Newcastle. 

„ ,, 38. — Aminadab Gideon, the Jew. 

57._« Dr. Hunchback," Mr. Whitefield. 
., 58. — Ballad Singer, Fook. 
63. — Mother Douglas. 
1 65. — King of Prussia. 
„ 215. — Prince Ferdinand. 
„ 215. — Lord March. 
„ 238. — Lord Sandwich. 
Volume III., Page 9. — Admiral Keppel. 

17. — The General, Lord Albemarle. 
„ 231. — The Monastery y Medmenham Abbey ^ 

Volume IV., Page 134. — Churchill, the Poet. 

202. — Kidgell. 
„ 211. — Wilkes, his " Essay on Woman." 
., 215. — Lord March. 
., 217.— Lord Sandwich. 


•» »» 


If >f 


There is little doubt in the editress's mind that the virtuoso in 
volume i. page 91, was Henry Constantine Jennings, of Shiplake 
Court, Oxon, who collected every description of curiosity, from 
statuary and pictures to shells and other objects of natural history. 
No doubt Mrs. Powys, being on very friendly terms with his second 
wife, omitted his name in the list, either out of respect to her, or 
as a fact patent to herself. 

38o NOTES 

NOTE IV.— (Page 1 1 8.) 


The final break up of the sham Franciscan Monks of Medmen- 
ham Abbey took place in 1762. One reason for the dissolution of 
the " Hell Fire Club," as it was called, doubtless was the growing 
scandal of their mysterious rites in the neighbourhood, culminating 
with the adventure and escape of the monkey, dressed as the Devil, 
described in volume iii. of " ChrysaL" 

But this same year. Sir Francis Dashwood was made Chancellor 
of the Exchequer ; he also succeeded to the title of Lord Le De- 
spencer — probably the feeling of noblesse oblige would press more 
heavily upon him. He had commenced the restoration of the 
church tower of West Wycombe Church in the previous year, and 
on October 25, 1761, the peal of six bells announced its completion. 
This tower is surmounted by a low spire, on the top of which is a 
hollow ball, with seats round the interior to hold twelve persons ; 
the only access to this is from a ladder outside. A portion of 
the tower, and chancel, of the church is old. To join these, Sir 
Francis Dashwood built a nave, which resembles more closely a 
ballroom than a church ; the pulpit and reading-desk are arm- 
chairs, with book stands in front, mounted on simulated low chests 
of drawers which draw out, forming steps. The font, the size of a 
basin, has three doves perched on it, whilst a serpent is represented 
climbing the pillared stem. The wooden seats or forms were mov- 
able, and in each window the sills were formed into cupboards. 
Outside, on the north wall of the church, was painted a fresco of 
St Lawrence, the church's patron saint, grilling on a gridiron, with 
these words, " Though I give my body to be burned and have not 
charity, it profiteth me nothing." Also, to the south stood a sun- 
dial with this text, " Keep thy tongue from evil-speaking, lying, 
and slandering." And it is quite possible these texts were placed 
there to rebuke those who may have exaggerated the dissipations 
carried on at Medmenham. The church was finished in 1763. The 
mausoleum, described by Mrs. Powys, witnessed a curious scene on 
August 16, 1775, when the heart of Paul Whitehead, which he 
had left to Lord Le Despencer, was deposited there. Whitehead 
died December 30, 1774. Why the heart was not buried before, 
is a mystery. Anyhow, a comic funeral was held. The Bucks 
militia, with a band of flutes, French horns, bassoons, &c., attended 

NOTES 381 

in procession. The heart, placed in a marble urn covered with 
crape, was placed in a niche of the mausoleum, three volleys were 
fired, and a merry time of feasting held afterwards. 

Lipscomb says in his " History of Buckinghamshire," the heart was 
stolen from the urn in 1839, despite the inscription on the urn : — 

" Unhallowed hands this gem forbear, 
No gems or orient spoil. 
Lie here conceaVd, but what's more rare, 
A heart that knew no guile." 

In Chambers's "Book of Days" it states, under the church at 
West Wycombe, half-way down the hill, is a door leading to a long 
subterranean passage, uniting a series of caves, divided into several 
parts by columns left in the chalk. These are said to have been 
excavated by Lord Le Despencer. In the middle is a pool of water, 
called the Styx, said formerly to have been deeper, and only to be 
crossed by a boat ; now it is bridged by stepping-stones, leading to 
a large, lofty, circular cave, from the roof of which is a hook for 
hanging a lamp. In these caves it is asserted the club held their 
meetings after the break up at Medmenham. 

The principal members of the community at Medmenham were — 

President, Sir Francis Dashwood, afterwards Lord Le De- 

Sir John Dashwood King, Lord Le Despencer's half-brother, 
the last survivor of the Club. 

Earl of Sandwich. 

Hon. Bubb Doddington. 


John Wilkes. 

Lord Melcombe Regis. 

Sir William Stanhope. 

Charles Churchill, poet. 

Paul Whitehead, poet, and secretary. 

Robert Lloyd, poet 

Henry Lovibond Collins. 

Dr. Ben Bates, 

Sir John d' Aubrey, only present a few times at meetings, as 
too young. 

The cradle that Wilkes is said always to have slept in at Med- 
menham was still in existence there when Miss Berry visited Mrs. 
Scott, of Danesfield, in 181 1. 

382 NOTES 

NOTE v.— (Page 130.) 

In Bitterley Church, Salop, the parish Henley Hall is situated 
in, are the tablets of Thomas Powys of Snitton, who died on 
November 19, 1639, and his wife Elizabeth, daughter of Richard 
Smyth of Credenhiil, in the county of Hereford, who died July i, 
1645, placed to their memory by their son, Thomas Powys of Henley 
Hall, together with his own, and his two wives. 

Thomas of Henley Hall died April 21, 167 1, his first wife, 
Anne Littleton, daughter of Sir Adam Littleton, of Stoke Milborough, 
Salop, died June 30, 1655, and his second wife, Mary Cotes, died 
June 7, 1668. 

Sir Littleton Powys, Thomas's illustrious eldest son, is also 
buried at Bitterley, together with his wife Agnes, nie Carter. 
She died November 28, 1720, aetat 66; he survived her till March 

i3i i73i» «tat 85. 

Sir Thomas Powys and his second wife, Elizabeth Meadowes, 
were originally buried at Lilford Church, Northamptonshire, but the 
first Baron Lilford, pulled Lilford Church down in 1778, and removed 
the bodies of his great-grandfather and his second wife, together with 
the monument, to Thorpe Achard Church, Oundle, a joint parish 
to Lilford. Sir Thomas's first wife, Sarah Holbeach, dying before 
he bought Lilford of the Elmes family, was buried at Mollington, 
Warwickshire, her maiden home. The monument to Sir Thomas 
is in white marble in classic style, representing him by a semi-recum- 
bent figure, clad in the robes of a judge of the Queen's Bench. On 
either side of him are two upright female figures ; at the head, one 
syml)olical of religion ; at the feet, another intended to represent 
eloquence. The sculptor's name was Robert Handstow ; the elabo- 
rate inscription is from the pen of Matthew Prior, as follows : — 

"Here lies interred Sir Thomas Powys, Knt, second son of 
Thomas Powys of Henley, in the Co. of Salop, Sergeant at Law, 
and Anne, daughter of Sir Adam Littleton of Stoke, Milborough, in 
the said Co. By his first wife, Sarah, daughter of Ambrose Hol- 
beach of Mollington in the Co. of Warwick, he had 3 sons, Thomas, 
Edward, and Ambrose; and 3 daughters, Sarah, Anne, and Jane. 
By his second wife, Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Philip Meadowes, 
Knt., he had two sons, both named Philip. He was appointed 
Solicitor General in 1686, Attorney General 1687, Premier Sergeant 
at Law 1702, one of the Judges of the Queen's Bench 17 13. He 
died the 4th of April 1 7 1 9, aged 70. 

NOTES 383 

" As to his profession : 

"In accusing, cautious; in defending, vehement; in all his 
pleadings, sedate, clear, and strong; in all his decisions, unpre- 
judiced and equitable. He studied, practised, and governed the 
law in such a manner that nothing equalled his knowledge, except 
his eloquence; nothing excelled both, except his justice; and 
whether he was greater as an advocate, or a judge, is the only cause 
he left undecided. 

" As to his life : 

"He possessed by a natural happiness all those civil virtues 
which form the Perfect Gentleman. And to those by Divine good- 
ness were added that fervent zeal, and extensive charity, which dis- 
tinguished the Perfect Christian. 

** The tree is known by its fruits : He was a loving husband and 
indulgent father, a constant friend, and a charitable patron, frequent- 
ing the devotions of the Church, pleading the cause, and relieving 
the necessities of the poor. What by his example he taught 
throughout his life, at his death, he recommended to his family and 
his friends. 

" To fear God and live uprightly, 
Let whosoever reads this stone 
Be wise and be instructed." 

Dame Elizabeth Powys died at Lilford, December 4, 1728, and 
was buried by the side of Sir Thomas on December 12, 1728. 

NOTE VI.— (Page 214.) 


After the cessation of the Civil War, Anthony Lybbe, as men- 
tioned before, rebuilt the river front of the house facing south, called 
in a deed, dated September 11, 1672, "The New Building," also 
he made " the garden called the lower garden joining the rest of the 
New Building, and of the Mote going to the said lower garden, and 
of all the orchards called the New Orchards, lying between the 
ancient east wall of the capital messuage, and nye the field there 
called Culverfield, and of the new erected summer-house, and 
banqueting house there, lately built at the north-west corner of the 
said new orchard, and of all the stables and haylofts, lately also 

384 NOTES 

erected by the said Anthony Lybbe, in the yard house a back court 
out of the said messuage, and called by the names of the 'New 
Stables ' there." 

The next alterations are from a book of memorandums of Mrs. 
Richard Lybbe {rUe Twysden) : — 

"17 18. — The two south windows by the great parlour sashed, 
gates and palisades at the lower end of the walk to the river made. 

" 1 7 19. — A turret built over the cloister passage with a clock. 

"1720. — A new walk made down the middle of the great 
orchard ; a garden plat made at the end of the summer-house. 

In 1755 Mr. Powys, father-in-law of our Mrs. Philip Lybbe 
Powys, put up a billiard-table " in the room next the old drawing- 

In Mrs. Philip Lybbe Powys's Diary occurs: "Alterations made 
at Hardwick from 1765." 

" As 'tis most likely no further improvements will be made by 
us at present at Hardwick, I shall set down from a little book what 
trifling things were done there, as I always made memorandums of 
them, as my father Powys used to do, as I find it pleasing by such 
notes to recollect how things were formerly : — 

"In 1766 my brother, Captain Richard Powys, and myself 
began the Menagerie ; 'twas where before was called the Wilderness 

" 1767. — The cut laurel hedge, parallel to the gravel terrace, we 
let grow up rude, taking away every other tree, and planted the ever- 
greens now there, as there were no evergreens in the pleasure garden, 
but the above straight laurel hedge, and old yew arbour, and high yew 
hedge from that to the bird-house, or place for canary birds. 

" 1768. — Cut down the above yew hedge, opened arches in the 
yew arbour, which before was entirely close, except a small arch at 
each end, and as it stood by itself was called ' the hearse ' ; but as 
'twas a favourite place of my father's, we would not cut it down, but 
by opening, and planting about ^ it, made it look tolerable. Made 
that year my flower-garden, just by the Menagerie. 

" 1 769. — Planted the weeping willows by the canal, made the 
rusticated stone-work, and planted to hide the ditches, laid the lower 
part of the pleasure-ground down in grass, and planted single trees. 
It was before a vineyard, currants and gooseberries, &c. 

" 1 77 1. — Took down paling that inclosed the woods in circles on 
the lawn, in front of the house, put the fences, and Dutch stiles, farther 
back out of sight, cleared the underwood to show the stems of the 

^ This is now a long tunnelled arbour, with seats each side. 

NOTES 385 

beech-trees, which before were not seen from the windows, as the 
paling and underwood came down on each side, even with the old 
hawthorn now standing. The grove gate which was down there, re- 
moved to the chalk-pit ; by these alterations the fine natural clump 
shows itself, under which is a root bench. 

" 1772. — Laid the green slope before the breakfast parlour window 
into the pleasure garden by taking down a wall, and high yew hedge 
which divided them. The single yew-tree now standing, was the 
uppermost one of the hedge, which with the wall went down from 
that to the canal, where a necessary house, answering to the chicken- 
house now stands behind the shrubs on the opposite side, which 
were that year planted against the wall by the farm-yard, and a water- 
closet made amongst those trees. 

" The white Chinese railing all taken away, and a green rail run 
across the avenue. 

" 1774. — Built part of a new high wall in the kitchen-garden by 
the melon ground. It is to be returned up the hill, to meet the 
upper wall. {N.B. — Was done June 1788.) Forty-six walnut 
trees were cut down that year in the approach to the house, and 
by grubbing up a hedge on the other side laid the two fields 
together, the road only between them. New fancy gates at each 
end, a clump planted at the farther one, and a grass walk made 
round Culmar Field. Planted shrubs and evergreens on the outside 
of the garden wall, from the Ha-ha to the garden, close by the bird- 
house, and a sand walk thro' the shrubberies. The wall from the 
Ha-ha to the canal, intended to be pulled down. 

" ^nS' — In September planted round the outside of the lower 
wall in the kitchen-garden in Gittam Field, to hide the outhouses, 
bams, &c., from the Whitchurch road. Filled up a very deep 
hole by the housekeeper's room window, in the pleasure ground, and 
turfd it. 

** 1776. — Put up new white gates at each end of Gittam ; planted 
off the road by short white posts ; planted a clump of evergreens at 
the farther gate, and at the lower corner a clump of Lombardy 
poplars. The latter were all stolen, and the former eat by cattle. 

*'i778. — Planted a clump of those poplars on our sandhills, 
Goring Heath, by the clump of firs. These firs are now seen from 
Shotover Hill, near Oxford, and look well from the Bath road just 
beyond Reading, where is a pretty view of Hardwick woods. If the 
poplars grow there, they will be seen to great advantage very soon, 
as I measured some I've planted which grew about six feet in one 

2 B 

386 NOTES 

" 1778. — This year, by my mother's generosity, we made some 
alterations in the house — viz. lowered the large bow-window in the 
brown wainscot drawing-room^ new framed and glazed it, and the 
same in the room under it, which was then Mr. Powys*s study ; but 
by taking in two closets, which makes a recess for the sideboard, and 
putting up a new chimney-piece, it now makes a useful eating-room. 
{A'.B. — The above only cost ;£ioo.) 

" 1779. — New painted the stucco parlour, and great staircase. 

" 1783. — Pulled down that part of the pleasure garden wall 
before mentioned, opposite my dressing-room window, from the 
bottom of the gravel walk to the canal, continued on the Ha-ha to 
the clump at bottom, and put up the white pillar which was one of 
those at the old Ha-ha, formerly belonged to iron gates there, as IVe 
heard my father Powys say, though never was the approach to the 
house. Could it be made so, and the stucco parlour as the hall, 
'twould be much more eligible than at present, as the entrance is the 
worst part of the house. 

"1782. — Pulled down the old summer-house, or canary bird 
house as 'twas called, and built on the same spot a greenhouse, 27 
feet long, 12 wide, 10 high. Put no windows till the next year, as 
we waited for the old sashes from the breakfast parlour. We this 
year made a doorway thro' a closet in our bed-chamber into the 
small room adjoining, which we now paper'd, and put up a new bed, 
fitting it up for Caroline, and that year new painted the front bed- 
chamber, paper'd the closet within it, new papered the billiard-room 
and the mahogany bedroom and closet. 

** 1783. — Put new sashes, and lower 'd the windows of the break- 
fast parlour, and to make it uniform in the front to the river, lower'd 
and new sash'd the passage windows, and one in the study. 

"1784. — The underwood of Vachel's Walk cut down, as it 
always is every seven years. If we had stayed at Hardwick. we talk'd 
of grubbing it up, and lay it in a grass slope from Straw Hall, instead 
of the present close walk from the Dutch Stile, leaving single trees 
and clumps on the hill, as the present straight walk between the 
cut hedge to Straw Hall looks too formal. New fenced round the 
Menagerie this year." 

Mrs. Powys adds a little note later to say the Menagerie was 
destroyed. It seems to have contained choice trees, as she had 
chairs made for Hardwick from wood of the trees "in the Mena- 
gerie," which cost four guineas and a half each to make. 

Why the poplars were stolen, was because they were then almost 
unknown in this country. The first Lombardy poplar was brought 

NOTES 387 

by Lord Rochford in his carriage from Italy to General Conway, and 
planted by him at Park Place, Berks. This was only a few years 
before, and it is probable the Powys, obtained their plants from 
General Conway, their intimate friend. 

In 1838 and 1839 Mr. Henry Philip Powys, grandson of our 
Mrs. Powys, on coming into possession of Hardwick at his father's 
decease, had the walls scraped of the whitening, which the bad taste 
of a preceding generation had placed over the grand old red bricks. 
The Elizabethan grand staircase also freed from a disfigurement of 
white paint ; a colonnade on north side of the house removed, and 
many other alterations, taking out what French windows had been 
placed in lieu of muUioned ones, restoring the mullions, and placing 
sashes between them. 

Since the long tenancy of Mr. W. Day Rose a wing with a fine 
billiard-room, and bedrooms ovtr, stables, tennis-house, lodges, &c., 
have been built by him ; but all these improvements belong to a far 
later date than our narrative, therefore for space' sake, must be only 
glanced at here. 

NOTE VII.— (Page 229.) 


Anne Conway, the only child, and heiress of General Conway 
by his marriage with I^dy Ailesbury, was born in 1748. 

Horace Walpole, cousin of her father, stood as her godfather, 
and from infancy she was his pet and plaything. She early showed 
remarkable quickness of intelligence. 

When quite a child, laughing at a model of an Italian street 
artist, she was reproved by David Hume, he telling her she could 
not make a similar. She immediately set to work to model a head 
in wax, which she afterwards reproduced in stone. She had lessons 
from Ceracchi, and Bacon ; she also studied anatomy under Cruik- 
shank. On June 14, 1767, she married John Damer, eldest son 
of Joseph Damer, Lord Milton, afterwards Earl of Dorchester. 
The marriage turned out a very unhappy one. Mr. Damer was a 
wild, dissolute spendthrift. He, and his brothers contracted a debt 
of ;^7o,ooo, and on their father refusing to pay, Mr. Damer shot 
himself on August 15, 1776, at the "Bedford Arms," in Covent 
Garden, after a riotous supper with boon companions. He was 
only thirty-two, and heir to ^22,000 a year. Horace Walpole 
remarks of this affair: "^^5000 a year in present, and ;^2 2,000 in 

388 NOTES 

reversion, are not, it would seem, sufficient for happiness, and cannot 
check a pistol." 

Mrs. Darner was left with a jointure of ^2500 ; she now devoted 
herself to her favourite art of sculpture. 

In 1779 she was taken prisoner by a privateer, as she was on 
her way to Jersey, to her father. General Conway, then Governor 
of the island, but was allowed eventually to proceed to him. The 
two heads of "Thamesis and "Isis" on Henley Bridge, the latter 
a portrait of her friend, Miss Freeman of Fawley Court, were 
executed in 1 785. To these were added a dog, for which she was 
highly honoured by the Academy of Florence. An osprey eagle 
which stood in the gallery at Strawberry Hill, and under which 
Horace Walpole fondly inscribed, "Non me Praxiteles pinxit, sed 
Anna Damer." Three busts of Nelson; one she presented to 
William IV., now at Windsor; one is in the Council Chamber of 
the Guildhall, London. A bust of Charles James Fox (her intimate 
friend), which she gave to Napoleon ; he in return gave her a snuff- 
box with his portrait set in diamonds^ Besides these she executed 
a statue of George III., busts of Queen Caroline, Lady E. Foster, 
Lady Melbourne, Lady Ailesbury (her mother), Miss Farren, Miss 
Berry, &'c., &c. In the journal of Miss Berry will be found a 
number of letters from Mi^. Damer, and to her. 

Horace Walpole left her Strawberry Hill with all its contents. 
On the death of Lady Ailesbury, her mother, who resided with 
her, Mrs. Damer, finding it lonely, in 181 2 resigned the house and 
property, together with ^2000 per annum left to keep it up, to the 
next heir, Lord Waldegrave, and in 18 18 bought York House, 
Twickenham. On May 28, 1828, she died, and was buried at 
Sundridge, Kent. She desired her working tools, apron, and the 
ashes of her favourite little dog " Fidele," to be buried with her. 
" Combe Bank," in the parish, had long been in possession of the 
Argyll family. Her mother was buried at Sundridge, in a tomb 
designed by Mrs. Damer. Her own tablet is in the chancel of 
the church, and bears this inscription — 

Hie propre jacet 
Uno chara cum matre loco, 


Sculptrix et Statuaria, Illustris Femina, 

Henrici Seymour Conway, et Carolina Campbell, Filia. 

NOTES 386 

NOTE VIII.— (Page 254.) 


Richard Barry, Viscount Buttevant, was the son of Richard 
Barry, sixth Earl of Barrymore, by his wife. Lady Emilia Stanhope, 
third daughter of William, Earl Harrington. He was born August 
14, 1769. His father dying when he was four years old, he suc- 
ceeded to the title and family estates of Castle Lyons, Rath Cormack, 
Ireland, &c. He had a sister, Caroline, a year older than himself, 
afterwards Comtesse de Melfort, and two younger brothers, Henry 
and Augustus. When old enough for a tutor, his mother placed 
him with the Rev. John Tickell (afterwards rector of Gawsthorpe, 
Cheshire, and East Mersey, Kent), at Wargrave-on-Thames, under 
whose tutelage he remained till his fourteenth year. His attach- 
ment to his old tutor and his wife, who remained living at Wargrave, 
probably led him in after life to frequent that village, where he lived 
in what is still called " Barrymore House,*' now the property of the 
famous traveller, Frederick Selous, Esq. Mrs. Tickell was the sister 
of Mrs. Hill, wife to Joseph Hill, owner of Wargrave Hill, the 
beloved friend of the poet Cowper, who in his poetical epistle 
addressed to him, describes him as — 

*' An honest man, close-buttoned to the chin, 
Broad cloth without, and a kind heart within." 

Lady Barrymore died in 1780, when her son was only eleven. At 
fourteen he went to Eton. On going there, his grandmother, the 
Countess of Harrington, presented him with a cheque for ^1000 
for pocket-money, a most injudicious gift, which probably laid the 
seeds of his future extravagance, as from his former tutor and his 
amiable, simple-minded wife, it is not likely he could have acquired 
extravagant habits. His grandmother dying soon after, he was 
henceforth master of his own destiny. In Anthony Pasquin's ** Life 
of Lord Barrymore,'' is a portrait of him ; an elegant-looking young 
man, with regular, agreeable features, an aquiline nose, a high intel- 
lectual-looking forehead, his hair brushed straight back, and with 
a generally amiable expression. Doubtless had he lived longer, the 
extravagance of youth, and follies induced by the roistering company 
he frequented, would have been toned down, and he would have 
eventually settled into a useful, perhaps intellectual, member of 
society. The freaks he now entered on were more the follies of a 

390 NOTES 

boy than a man ; such as he, and his brothers changing the different 
inn signs at night, so that the landlord of the " Red Dragon," say, 
would wake some morning to see the sign of the " Black Bull " from 
miles off, dangling as his sign-board ! They would lash the windows 
with their whips in the night, so as to break them. One favourite 
freak was to offer to send friends to London, or elsewhere, by one of 
his own carriages, he, and a brother slyly substituting themselves for 
the postillions, and then needlessly bump and charge the banks en 
route, when the inside passengers would cry for mercy. Lord Barry- 
more would sometimes place himself in his carriage, and imitate the 
cries of a female in distress, to the curiosity, and amazement of the 
people on the way. On the islands near Wargrave, and in the 
woods, he and his merry companions would have wine, &c, buried, 
and then make picnics to some spot where a cache existed, dig 
up the ** Falernian," and make a feast. Barrymore House consisted 
mainly then of two long rooms, called the " Upper," and " Lower 
Barracks." Anthony Pasquin tells us, along these, hammocks were 
slung, as many as twenty guests at a time in the house, and no good 
inn then in Wargrave. Woe betide the man who sought his ham- 
mock before the conventional late morning hour, before the rest : 
he was condemned to condign punishment, administered by a 
mock court of justice. 

From early youth Lord Barrymore had showed an aptitude for 
music, and improvisation, and a great partiality for the stage. At 
eighteen he began theatricals at Wargrave in a bam, and subse- 
quently erected the theatre mentioned in these pages. He now 
proceeded tp every extravagance, money could be spent on ; follow- 
ing his injudicious friend. Sir John I^de*s foolish conduct in raising 
money by help of the Jews, &c., on a fortune of jQ^ooo per annum, 
with ;^ioo,ooo ready money on his attaining his majority. His 
favourite sentence was ** D the expense ! " 

He bought from Henry Constantine Jennings, the celebrated 
virtuoso of Shiplake Court, Oxon, a pack of hounds \ purchased some 
stags for hunting. Hounds and horses, together with his carriages, 
were kept at Twyford, no adequate stables being at Wargrave. Four 
negroes in scarlet and silver, proficient on the French horn, accom- 
panied the pack. His strings of horses, and splendid equipages 
rivalled the stable establishment of Chantilly. He, and " Pasquin," 
alia^ his friend J. W. Williams, delighted in painting the harness, and 
coach- panels with crests, coats of arms, and other devices. 

In 1787 he commenced his turf career, in which he showed 
great discrimination as to horse-flesh, and won numerous races, 

NOTES 391 

riding himself. His racehorses were kept at Newmarket, under 
Perren. A list of them, and their achievements, would take too long 
here. He was an eminent whip, and would often drive a coach-and- 
four from Wargrave to Newmarket, or the reverse, starting in the 
middle of the night ; but, like many Jehus, he disliked trusting another 
man with the " ribbons," and having once been upset with Captain 
Taylor in Wargrave in a post-chaise, he ever after had a horror 
of being driven. 

Unfortunately addicted to quinze, loo, &c., he frequently lost 
large sums at the tables. He had also a passion for the pugilistic 
art, and enlisted in his service a tinman, called Hooper, who, though 
a small man, not much over 11 stone weight, beat men of much 
larger proportions. At one time Lord Barrymore had six pugilists 
put up at his expense at the *• George and Dragon," Wargrave. 
He was a splendid swordsman, taking lessons from Angelo. 

His stage expenses must have been enormous, as besides the 
actors enumerated in these pages, many other professional celebri- 
ties acted for him. Delphini, the famous clown of Covent Garden, 
became his stage-manager, living at what is now called ** The Croft," 
Wargrave. So liberal was he, that every bargeman who passed, was 
treated to unlimited Burgundy. Good-natured, loo, for in some 
curious old letters found many years ago in the roof of Wargrave 
Hill (in possession of the editress), from Mrs. Tickell to her sister, 
Mrs. Hill, when in London, frequent mention is made of his con- 
veying fish, parcels, &c, to and fro between the sisters by his coach. 
Through Mrs. Hill, he was one of the earliest subscribers to Cowper's 

Nothing seemed to upset his good-humour. His ridiculous pet 
chorus of " Chip chow, cherry chow, fol de riddleido," seems to 
have been at any moment on his lips, even at the end of a duel, 
where his opponent,^ appearing in a ridiculous costume, excited his 
laughter. Harmless shots were fired, and the belligerents left the field 
arm in arm, he singing the above ! His entertainments were most 
costly— thirty shillings a head for a supper by D'Aubignd; ;£i5oo 
a night at Wargrave at times ; two entertainments at Ascot races in 
1 79 1 cost 1700 guineas, given for the Prince of Wales, who even- 
tually did not come ! 

A forest Catch Club, instituted by him, met the first Friday in 
the month at the ** Rose Inn," Wokingham. 

In 1 79 1 he contested the election at Reading, against Mr. 
Neville of Billingbear, but lost it. His pecuniary difficulties in- 

' Mr. Howarth. 

392 NOTES 

creased, so his property was sequestrated, the last two years Mr. 
Hammersley, the banker, making him an allowance of ^2500 out 
of it. In the spring of 1792 his house in Piccadilly, was sold to the 
Duke of Queensberry, better known as *'01d Q."; his theatre at 
Wargrave, in October the same year ; yet we find him playing within 
a few days of the latter in a cricket match of Wargrave and Twyford 
gentlemen, against Wokingham, for 100 guineas. 

He, and his brother Augustus, both entered the Berkshire Militia, 
and in March 1793 Lord Barrymore was marching at the head of a 
party of French prisoners from Rye to Dover, pausing for refresh- 
ment at a little public-house at Folkestone. He called to his servant, 
to give him a lift in his curricle, which had been following. He 
gave the servant his gun, loaded with swan-shot, with which he 
had been shooting seagulls : this was placed in a careless way 
between his legs ; it discharged, shooting Lord Banymore in the 
head. He lived for only forty minutes after, and was buried at 
Wargrave on March 17, 1793, thus ending his short career in his 
twenty-fourth year. 

Augustus Barry immediately resigned his commission in the 
Berks Militia. Henry Barry succeeded to his brother's title. He 
married, but died without children in 1823. With him the title was 
extinct, Augustus having predeceased him. 

For more particulars of Lord Barrymore's life, see his Life by 
Anthony Pasquin, alias J. D. Williams, written in 1793, and " Last 
of the Earls of Barrymore," by John R. Robinson. 


AhB(^ts Bromley, 359 

Ailesbury, Lady, 112, 182, 223-225, 

229, 23s, 284. 323 
Aldith, 100 

Alexander, Bishop of Lincoln, 16 
Alfred's Tower, 170, 171 
All Souls' College, 41 
Alum Bay, 273 
Amesbury Hill, 49, 173, 174 
Andover, 61 
Annesley, 195, 196, 216, 238, 251, 

253. 278 
Ascot, 282 
Ashburton, 70, 77 
Assembly Rooms, York, 17 
Atkyns, 287 

Atkyns, Wright, 290, 349, 361, 366 
Axminster, 65, 78 

Badgbmoke, 240 

Bailey, Mr., 336 

Baker, Mr., 93 

Baldock, 14 

Baltimore. Lord, 151 

Bamfield, Mr., 161 

Bank Paper, 164 

Barham Downs, 307 

Barleborough Hall, 27 

Barry more, Earl of, 188, 238, 239, 

244, 246-250, 254 
Barton Mills, 2 
Bateman, Lord, 130 
Bath, 50, 214, 225, 288, 291-293 

299, 324-328, 332, 349, 351-353. 

357, 362, 363 
Bayham, Lord, 226, 229, 234 
Beaconsfield, 121 
Beckford, Alderman, 166 
Beckford, Mr., 166, 167 
Bedford, Duke of, 9 
Bedford, General, 113 

Beenham, 8-10, 60 

Belchier, Mr., 34 

Bell Inn, Henley, 179 

Belton House, 16 

Belvidere, 150 

Bensington, 35 

Berins Hill, 35 

Berthier, General, 346 

** Bclty, Master," 363 

Bevis, Mount, 269 

Birches, 234 

Birt, Mr., 20, 123 

Bisham Abbey, 237 

Blandford, 63 

Blandy, Miss, 38 

Blenheim Palace, 43-45, 124, 197 

Hletchingdon, 194-196, 198, 200, 216, 

238, 321 
Blickling, 21 1, 212 
Blount's Court, 153 
Blount, Sir Walter, 132, 140, 338 
Blundell, Mr., 346 
Blythe River, 334, 327 
Bolney Court, 179 
Bolton, Duchess of, 247 
Bolton, Duke of, 80 
Bonaparte, Napoleon, 346 
Boston, Lord, 113, 202 
Bowles, Mr., 137, 138, 141 
Brading, 265 
Brand, 2, 3 
Bramshill, 115 
Bridport, 65 
Bristol, 49, 152, 251 
Bristol, Dean of, 235, 242 
British Museum, 57 
Broadstairs, 311 
Broadway Hill, 46 
Brook, Lord, 341 
Brown, "Capability,** 145, 148, 195, 





Brunswick, Princess of, 150 
Bryanston Park, 64 
Buckingham, 154 
Buckingham Palace, 116, 117 
Bucklei>ury, 8 
Bui marsh Heath, 329 
Bulstrode, 120, 121 
Burford, 141 
Burleigh, 14, 15 
Byng, Admiral, 13 

Cadogan, Lord, 60, 155, 213, 216 
Camden, Lord, 120, 122, 179, 185, 

187, 188, 190, 191, 201, 222, 249, 

284, 286, 289, 305, 348 
Cannock Hills, 339 
Canterbury, 229-320, 346, 347, 368 
Canterbury, Dean of, 295, 296, 297, 

303. 3>6, 320, 332. 368 
Carlisle, Earl of, 19 
Carrington, Lord, 356 
Carr, Mrs.. 326, 327 
Castle Howard, 18, 19 
Catalani, Angelica, 366, 367 
Catherine, Empress, 6, 212 
Caversham Park, 60, 161, 162 
Charles L, 102-105 
Charles II., 66, 176, 256 
Charlotte, Queen, 90, 92, 159 
Chatham, Lord, 261 
Chatsworth, 28, 29 
Chaucer, 45, 242, 243 
Cheltenham, 48 
Cherbourg Cannon, 33 
Chesterfield, 25, 26 
Chesterfield, Earl of, 13 
Chester ford, 2, 12 
Child, Mrs., 230 
Chilterns, 215 

Christchurch College, 35, 36 
Chute, Chaloner, 203, 204 
Chute, Mr., 203, 204, 213 
Clarendon Printing House, 40, 41 
Clayton, Lady Louisa, 217-219 
Clayton, Mr., 118 
Clifdcn, 285 
Coke, Lord, 1 1 
Coleraine, Lord, 161 
Coley, 246 
Conway, General, iii, 112, 173, 214, 

223. 232, 238, 245, 247, 251, 284, 334 

Conyngham, Mrs., 128-143 

Cooper, Gislingham, 240 

Cooper, Miss, 248, 252, 263, 266, 269 

Cooper, Rev. Dr., 248, 263, 275 

Cooper, Rev. Edward, 250, 270 et seq. 

Cope, Sir John, 115, 116 

Cope, Sir Richard, 230 

Cornwallis, Lord, 261 

Coronation of George III., 87-93 

Corsham, 202 

Court, at, 151 

Court of Hill, 127-144 

Cowes, 257, 258 

Creur^, Mr., 205, 206 

Crowsley Park, 287 

Culham Court, 123,247-249, 252-253. 

254, 283, 356 
Culham House, 153 
Cumberland, Duke of, 9, 114, 249 
Cumford, 31 
Curzon, Lord, 339 
Cust, Lady, 16 

Damer, Mrs., 224, 225, 232 

Dance, Mr., 257 

Darnley, Lady, 348 

Darwin, Dr., 337 

Dashwood, Sir James, 198, 200 

I^erby, 353, 354, 361 

Derbyshire, 24-32 

Despencer, Lord Le, 117, 118. 155, 

Devonshire, 65-79 
Dillon, Mr., 231 
Dillon, Viscount, 199 
Ditchley, 198, 199 
Donellan, Mr., 274 
Dorchester, 64 
Doughty, Mr., 208 
Dove Dale, 359, 360 
Druid's Temple, 234 
Dummer, Mr., 257 
Dundas, Mr., 278 
Dunstable, 33 
Dutton, Mr., 351 

Eastbury, 62, 63 

Edgecumbe, Lord, 70, 71 

Edgecumbe, Mount, 71-73 

Egginton, 340 

Elizabeth, Room of Queen, 109, no 



Elmes Family, 95 

Englefield, Sir Henry, 182, 189 

Erskine, Lord Chancellor, 336 

Evesham, Vale of, 46, 47, 125 

Ewelme, 242, 243 

Ewer, Miss, 194 

Ewer, Mr., 310, 317 et seq. 

Exeter, 66-69 

Fairmile, 359 

Fane, Lady Elizabeth, 344 

Farrar, Dean, 304 

Farren, Miss, 231 

Fawley Court, 97, 145-148, 177, 185- 

188, 216, 229, 237, 240, 284, 329 
Fawley Rectory, 123, 214-216, 240, 

Feme, Bishop of, 364 
Ferrers, Earl, 56 

Fitzclarence, Lord Augustus, 105 
Fleming, Mr., 257 
Fonthill, 166, 167 

Freeman, Mrs. Sambrook, 145, 147, 
148, 182, 185, 216-220, 235, 237, 

246. 363 
Freeman, Sambrook, 145-149, 182, 

185-187, 221 
Freeman, Strickland, 367, 369 
French Prisoners, 74 
Frost, Severe, 156-158, 280 

Gainsborough, 233, 240 

Galloway, Lady, 198 

Garrick, 183, 336 

Gay, 243 

George IL, death of, 57 

George IIL, 58, 59, 152 

George IIL, coronation of, 87-92 

" George, Royal," 73 

Giardini, 161 

Girle, Miss, 33, 93 

Girle, Mr., 80, 371 

Girle, Mrs.. 46, 122, 214, 344, 345, 

368, 370 
Gibbons, Grinling, 37 
Glasshampton, 126 
Gloucester, 48 
Gloucester, Prince William of, 304 

307. 316-319. 
Goring Spring, 275 
Gosport, 81, 82, 84 

Grandison, Lady, 178, 180, 181, 188 

Grandison, Sir Charles, 128 

Gregory, Colonel, 350 

Grose, Sir Nash, 200 

(Jrote, Mr., 277 

Guerre, La, 44 

Guildford, 84, 85 

Hagley, 338 

Hallam, Dr., 242 

Halls of Harpsden Court, 290, 330, 

Hammond, Dr., 8 

Hamstall Ridware, 330, 334, 33S» 343« 

344» 353, 359, 360, 361, 3^7 
Hanger, Mr., 161 
Hardwick Hall. 26, 27 
Hardwick House. 97-11 1, 214, 215 
Hare, Sir Thomas, 1 1 
Harleyford, 1 18, 119 
Harpsden, 297, 330, 331 
Hatfield, 14 
Heathcote, Miss, 352 
Heathcote, Sir William, 257 
Hcckfield, 61, 163, 236 
Hedsor, 113 
Hendon, 167 
Henley, 187, 188, 228, 229, 240, 250, 

253 277, 279, 321, 330 
Henley Hall, 130, 131 
Henley Park, 217-220 
Heythrop. 199, 2co 
High Tor, 31, 32 

Hill, Mr., 127, 129, 132, 135, 139, 141 
Hill, Mrs., 128, 131, 132, 136, 138, 

142, 143, 295 
Hoare, Mr., 168-73 
Hodges, Miss, 182-184 
Hodges, Mr., 179, 181, 190 
Holkham, 5, 9. 10, 1 1, 212 
Holly Copse, 105 
Honiton, 60, 77, 78 
Houghton Hall. 6, 7, 212, 213 
Hoveden, 208 
Hownian, Rev. Arthur, 290, 348, 

Hundred House, 126 

Hurley Priory, 175-177 

Hursley, 257 

Hurstbourne, 164 

Hussey, Mr.. 202 



Innbs, Mrs., 365 
Ives, Mr., 211 
Ivy Bridge, 70, 77 

Jackson, Major, 321 
Jackson, Mr., i~8, 10-12 
James, Mr., 236, 244 
Jeffreys, John, 120 
Jennings, 164, 290, 346 
Jennings, Miss, 297 
Jemingham, Mr., 208 
Jersey, Lady, 197 
Jersey, Lord, 197 
Jesse, Mr., 105 
Jeston, Rev. Humphrey, 321 
Jordan, Mrs., 248 

Kauffman, Angelica, 173 
Kedleston, 361 
Keeling, Mrs., 252, 253. 301 
Kent, Mr., 205 
Killala, Bishop of, 305 
King, Mr., 356 
King's Gate, 311 
Knighton House, 260 
Knole, 148-150 

Lansdowne, Marquis of, 291 

Laurence, the Painter, 358 

Lavender Drops, 156, 159 

Law Family, 283, 284, 286 

Leatherhead, 84, 85 

Leeds, 23 

Lefevre, Mr., 236 

Lefney House, 300, 301 

Leicester, Lord, 8 

Leigh Family, 287, 335 

Lever, Sir Ashton, 225 

Lichfield Cathedral, &c, 340-353 

Lichfield, Lord, 199 

Linley, Miss, 152, 153, 161 

Linwood. Miss, 290, 300 

Lloyd, Mrs, 208 

Lombe, Mr. John, 354 

Long, Mr. Walter, 364 

Lovelace, Lord, 175-177 

Lowestoffe, 211 

Ludlow, 133-137 

Lulsley, 371 

Lutwyche, Mrs., 298, 302, 324, 327, 345 

Lybbe Family, 95, 101-107, 109, no 

Lymington, 272, 273 
Lynch, Dr., 306 

Macartney, Mrs., 327 

Macclesfield, Lord, 181, 220, 269, 290 

Magdalen College, 42 

Maidenhead, 59 

Maiden, Lord, 183, 189, 191, 193 

Malmesbury, Lady, 321-323 

Malmesbury, Lord, 321, 349, 355 

Mai ton, 18 

Manchester, Duke of, 211 

Mapledurham, 338 

Margate, 310-312 

Marlborough, Duke of, 43-451 142, 

143, 163, 252 
Mary, Queen of Scots, 27, 353, 35 ^ 
Matlock, 30-32, 359-361 
Mawley, 1 39-1 41 
Mayo, Miss, 327 
Meadowes, Sir Philip, 107, no 
Meadowes, Sir Sidney, 276 
Meath, Bishop of, 352 
Mecklenburg, Princess Charlotte of, 87 
Melcomb, Lord, 156 
Mereworth, 151 

Michell, Misses, 245, 247, 248, 254 
Michell, Mr., 123 
Micklem, Mrs., 288 
Middleton Park, 197, 198 
Mills, Mr., 192 
Milnes, 19, 23, 308, 309 
Milnes, Mr. Pem, 19, 23, 24 
Mitford, 301 
Molesworth, Miss, 222 
Monkey Island, 113, 114 
Montagu House, 57 
Montagu, Lady Mary Wortley, 343 
Montagu, Sir Charles, 178, 180 
Mount Edgecumbe, 71-73 
Mount, Mr., 34, 203 
Morant, Edward, 272 
Moravians, 20-23 
Morten Henmarsh, 45 
Museum, British, 57, 225 
Museum, Oxford, 37, 38 

Needwood Forest, 336-338 
Nelson, Lady, 327, 328 
Nelson, Lord, 328, 330, 347 
Newark, 16 



New College, Oxford, 39, 40 
New Forest, 271, 272 
Newport, 258, 263, 264 
Newport Pagnel, 33 
Newion, Dr., 230 
Nicholas, Isle of St, 73, 75 
Nor/oik Journal {fitsi)^ I- 1 2 
Norfolk Journal {'XGOnA)^ 205-214 
Norman, Mrs., 294 

Obbrne, Bishop of Meath, 352 
Oglander, Sir William, 265 
Orkney, Lady, 115, 285 
Osterley Park, 230, 231 
Oxenden, Sir Harry, 315 
Oxford, 35-42, 145 
Oxford, Lord. 5-7, 212, 213, 350 

Palgrave, Mr., 329-331 

Miss, 329-331 

Palmerston, Lady, 271, 272, 274 

Palmerston, Lord, 270 

Panes Hill, 194 

Pantheon, 152 

Pardoe Family, 133, 134, 143 

Parker, Lady, 259, 264, 266 

Parker, Sir Hyde, 257-263 

Park Place, 111-113, 223-226, 234, 

284, 287, 291, 321-323, 349 
Peire, Marchioness de la, 329 
Pembroke Family, 53, 54, 165, 166 
Pembroke, Lady, 38, 89 
Percy Family, 81-84 
Phillips, Mr., 153 
Piozzi, Mrs., 243 
Pitt, Mr. George, 61, 93 
Pitt, Mr. William, 64, 305, 307, 313 
Pleydell, Mr., 64 
Plymouth Journal^ 59~^5 
Polygon, Southampton, 273 
Pope, Sir Thomas, 37 
Pope Sixtus, 172 
Poore, Bishop, 62 
Portsdown Hills, 84 
Powney, Mrs., 226 
Powys Family, 94-99, 107, 108, no, 

119, 120, 130, 131, 201, 220, 221, 

223, 251, 367-373 
Pratt, Mrs., 160, 185, 215, 222, 223 
Price, Sir Charles, 153 
Pump-room, Bath, 288, 294 

Quakers, 144 

Quarr Abbey, 265 

Queen Charlotte, 87, 90, 92, 116, 117, 

151. I52» I59» 217-220, 235, 241, 

242, 295 
Quin, 74, 75, 90 

Radcliffian Library, 41, 42 

Rainham Hall, 5 

Ramsgate, 311 -313, 347 

Randolph, Dr., 328 

Ranelagh, 240-242 

Ranzini, 327 

Reading, 35, 59-61, 157, 229, 234. 

236, 245, 247, 249, 275 
Remenham, 332, 363, 365 
Rhodes, Mr., 27 
Richmond, Duchess of, 224 
Rivers, Lord, 93 
Rochester, 320 
Rock Family, 131 
Rosehill, 123 
Rougemont Castle, 69 
Royal Academy, 122 
Ryde, 257, 259, 260, 263, 264, 265, 


Sadler's Wells, 225 

Saffron, 12 

Salisbury, 61, 62 

Salt Hill, 34 

Saville, Rev. Mr., 343 

Scarborough, 18, 19 

Scarsdale, Lord, 360 

Schutz, Mr., 121, 153 

Scobel, Mr., 367 

Seymour Portman, Mr., 64 

Shaftesbury, 79 

Shawe, Mr., 337, 338 

Shelboume, Lord, 155, 351 

Sheridan, Mr., 233 

Sheridan, Mrs., 161 

Shiplake, 290, 287, 297, 348 349, 

Shire Stone, 46 

Shotover, 121, 122 
Shottesbrook, 119 
Shottesbrook Park, 119 
Shrewsbury, Earl of, 124, 199 
Shrimpton, Mr., 251, 254, 291, 299, 
308. 310. 320, 329, 331. 332, 346 



Shrimpton, Mrs., 251, 315-317, 35^ 

Shropshite Journal f 124-145 

Shugborough, 338 

Siddons, Mrs., 225, 231 

Sidney, Sir Philip, 54 

Simpson, Miss, 25 

Simpson, Mr., 25 

Slaney, Mr., 205, 207-209, 211, 213, 

Slater, Miss, 19, 23, 31. 32 
Slater, Mr., 23, 24, 38, 32' 
Slatter, Canon, 100 
Sonning, 275, 276 

Southampton, 257, 268, 269, 273-275 
Spanish Ambassador's Fete, 24 1 « 242 
Spilman, Mr., 5, 7, 8 
Staffordshire Journal^ 333-344. 350» 

351. 353 
Stanford Court, 127 

Stanhope, Sir William, 155 
Stapieton, Bishop, 68 
Stapletons of Greys, 252, 290 
Stokes Bay, 82 
Stonehenge, 51-53, I73» ^74 
Stonor Chapel, 340, 345, 346 
Storace, Signora, 294 
Stourhead, 163, 168-173 
Stowe, 153, 154, 155 
Strahen, Miss, 138 
Strathfieldsaye, 93 
Strawberryhill, 227, 228 
** Straw Hall," 108, 115, 174 
Strickland, Miss Caroline, 307 
Stubbs, Rev. Mr., 359, 360 
Siukeley, Dr., 51-53 
Sturt, Miss, 241 
Suffolk, Duchess of, 242, 243 
S waff ham, 3 
Swilaar Oak, 336, 337 

Tallard, Marshal, 29, 45 

Taplow, 115 

Taylor, Dr., 321 

Tessier, Mons., 183, 184, 189, 191 

Thorley Hall, 2 

Townsend, Lord, 3 

Trinity College, Oxford, 37 

Turner, Sir William, 7 

Twysden, Lady, no 

Twysden, Miss, 177 

Tyson, 292, 293. 325, 345 

Urry, Mr., 273 
Uttoxcter, 335, 359, 360 

Vanderstbgks, Mr.. 296, 299 

Vansittart, Colonel, 119 

Vansittart, Mr. George, 237 

Vaux Hall, 232 

Villiers, Lady, 182, 187, 189, 190 

Villiers, Lord, 178, 179, 181 183, 

185-187, 189-192, 278 
Vincent, St. Rock, 49 
Vine, The, 203, 204 

Wakefield, Town of, 19, 24 
Wales, Dowager Princess of, 152 
Wales, Prince of, 244, 245, 247, 250, 

28 1, 282, 308 
Wales, Princess of, 280-283 
Walker, Dr., 259, 260 
Waller, Mr., 1 21 
Walpole, Horace, 74, 204, 227 
Walpole, Lord, 8, 102 
Walsingham Abbey, 5, 212 
Walton Hall, 27 
Wan stead House, 205 
Wargrave, 244-247, 249, 250, 253 
Warner, Lee, 5, 212 
Wasing Place, 203, 230 
Wenvo Castle, 20 
Wesenham Hall, 3-6, 8, 11, 12 
Westerton, 20 
Westminster Abbey, 230 
Westmoreland, Lord, 151, 156 
West, Mr., 254, 288, 290, 299, 356, 

West, Mrs. , 254, 283 

Weston, King's, 152 

West Wycombe Church, 117, 118, 

I55» iS6 
Wheatley, Mr., 137, 148, 151, 301, 302 
Whitchurch, 157 
White, Mr., 269 

" White Horse " Inn, Ipswich, 206 
Whitelock, Mr. William, 177 
Whitelock, Sir Bulstrode, 177 
Wickham, 81 
Wight^ Journal of Isle of, 255-269, 

Wilcox, Bishop, 175 
Wilcox, Mr., 175 
Wilkes, John, 266, 283 



Wilkes, Miss, 266 

Williams, Capt., 264, 265 

Williams, Lady, 309 

Williams, Mr., 248 

Williams, Mrs., 175 

Williams, Mr. Peers, 289 

Wilton House, 53, 54, 105, 106 

Winchester, 80, 81, 255-257, 274 

Windsor Castle, 1 15, 215, 234, 235, 285 

Winford, Mrs., 202, 229, 248 

Woburn, 33 

Wolsby, Dr., 304, 305, 307, 308, 

316, 317 
Woodstock, 43, 100 
Woolton Bridge, 258 

Worcester, 46, 144 
Wormslcy, 285 
Wright, Mrs., 153 
Wroughton, Miss, 327, 352 
Wykcham, William of, 256, 257 

XiMRNES, Mr., 249 

Yarmouth, 209-211 
York, 16, 17 

York, Duchess of, 292-294 
York, Duke of, 291-294 
Yorkshire Journal y 13-33 



Printed by Ballantyne, Hanson 6* Co. 
Edinburgh 6* London 










living in London, 




nt, Francis Sayes 

of Yattendon. 


. 1683, ffi. 

V. W. Har- 

ey, Rector 


d. 1746. 


b, 1684, 
d, 1704. 



b, 1685. 


b. 1686, 

d. 1687. 





r-T » 


'S, = EMME. 



= Elizabeth. 

A daughter of 



^« I 



lunily history commencing about 
in that descent"— CAROLINE Lm 


|irough the Barons of Main-yn- 
loch, Lord of Mochnant, youngest 
|f Rhodri Maur, King of Wales. 



(2) Margaret Humphrey. 




of BryndrinDog, 

ancestor of 

Powys of 


2 3 




I I 

Peter. Robert. 




7. 1891, 
31, 1894. 

I J 

Edward Hue 


6, Sept 3, 1873. 6, , 

Philp Lybbe 
Powys Lybbe. 


Percy CunlP* Shawe, 
6, Aug. 27, 1^874. 
m, April i8< 


John Dkuci, 
i. 1881. 


Constance Bi 


^. Sept 24, 1894. A 

HtfhftiM« •«»'■>•■